Local News

Durham Church Picnic Spoiled By Salmonella

Posted July 8, 2004

— Health officials in Durham County say 10 people have been confirmed with contracting a salmonella infection after eating at a church picnic.

Fifty-five others developed stomach problems.

The health department says those who became sick attended a picnic June 26 at Peace Missionary Baptist Church.

The food was prepared by a caterer who was not approved by the Durham County Health Department.

Salmonellosis

is a bacterial disease that can be transmitted by eating food from infected food-animals such as raw or undercooked eggs, unpasteurized milk, and meat or foods contaminated by animal products or an infected human.

The illness can occur 6 to 72 hours after exposure. The most common type of illness from salmonella infection involves sudden stomach cramps and nausea, followed by diarrhea and fever. Other symptoms may include headache, loss of appetite, weakness, and sometimes vomiting.

The illness may last for two to five days in healthy people. Dehydration or more severe illness may occur in children less than 5 years of age, the elderly, and those with suppressed immune systems.

No specific treatment is generally recommended for mild illnesses, except rehydration with fluids and electrolyte replacements such as Gatorade. Antibiotics may be indicated for persons with more severe infections.

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