April 30, 2011: Shigella Outbreak Linked To Missouri Elementary School

Missouri School Shigella Outbreak – Five confirmed cases of shigellosis have been reported at the Emerson Elementary School in Joplin, Missouri. Shigellosis is a bacterial infection caused by a group of bacteria called Shigella.

Symptoms of Shigella infection may include watery diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, straining to have bowel movements, and malaise. Symptoms may appear as early as 14 hours, to as late as 4 days after ingesting the bacteria. Shigellosis usually resolves in 5-7 days. Infants, small children, and seniors may be more likely to experience severe symptoms and complications. Individuals are infected via a fecal to oral route, so proper hand washing and hygiene can help prevent the spread of the bacteria.

Letters from the school district were sent home to the families of Emerson Elementary School students on Friday, warning of the outbreak and describing the steps that are being taken to prevent others from becoming ill.

According to public health officials, the first Shigella illness related to the outbreak was reported in early April. The source of the infections is still unknown.

What You Can Do If You Suspect Shigellosis

If you suspect that you or a family member has contracted Shigella, or you are experiencing food poisoning symptoms, contact your healthcare professional. He or she can order a stool culture to confirm Shigella infection. Let your doctor know that your child attends the school where the outbreak has occurred. You should also report illnesses to the Joplin Health Department. Often the health department can assist with testing if warranted.

If you are diagnosed with shigellosis, are awaiting medical confirmation of infection, or have a question regarding a food poisoning lawsuit, you can request a free legal case evaluation by calling our firm toll free at 1-877-934-6274.

The New Jersey Personal Injury Law Firm Of Eric H. Weinberg has been helping victims of defective drug, food, and medical device products since 1984. Let us help you too. Please see Talcum Powder Lawsuit and Pulmonary Embolism Lawsuit for information regarding our additional legal services.


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