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Salmonellosis: Risk Factors, Transmission, and Prevention

Risk Factors Associated with Salmonella

Salmonellosis is a condition related to the gastrointestinal illness that the genus Salmonella causes. Various risk factors are associated with the condition of Salmonella. Mainly, human beings can get infected with the condition by consuming foods contaminated with animals’ feces (Indar-Harrinauth et al., 2001). In most circumstances, consuming foods related to originating from animals will be a high risk of contracting the bacteria. The significant animals include poultry, pigs, milk, and eggs; additionally, vegetables may be contaminated as well. This is a clear indication that following the basic hygiene rules when handling food is essential to an individual. Failure to wash the hands after using a toilet is among the risk factors. This is because the bacteria might be present on the surfaces touched, and whenever the hand passes to the mouth without proper washing, it leads to infection. Similarly, before handling any food, a person must ensure that the hands are clean. When touching raw meat and cutting, it is recommended that they wash their hands.

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The meat that people should eat must always be thoroughly cooked. Undercooking meat does not kill the associated bacteria present, which implies that Salmonella quickly infects the consumers. The bacteria are always present in meat and feces, which means that a person should always consider cooking the meat well and thoroughly washing hands after cutting or handling it. Consuming fresh fruits without washing them is another risk factor that can lead to salmonellosis (Dang-Xuan et al., 2019). Fresh fruits may contain active bacteria, which may later infect the person. Other risk factors depend on the way pets are handled in homes. When the pets are allowed to access some of the areas where food is prepared or even stored, another risk factor is failing to wash their hands after handling or touching an animal. This causes the bacteria to spread because one may directly move to prepare food or handle some of the household’s utensils, causing the disease’s spread. When water that has been used in cleaning the habitat of an animal is discarded in the sink that will be used to wash food, the bacteria may still spread to human beings.

Another risk factor for the healthcare condition is when people at risk of contracting the disease involve themselves in cleaning the animals’ and pets’ habitats. This particular case will be even worse when they are doing such tasks without wearing protective gloves. The last factor is using manure that is uncured in gardens and or flower beds. The bacteria will still survive on the plants consumed by human beings and even animals in the future. This means that one will still contract the disease because it will survive for a long time.

Mode of Transmission of Salmonellosis

Feces mainly spread Salmonella through three different ways: food and water, direct contact with the animal, and, lastly, person-to-person. In most cases, food gets contaminated through various methods. They include cross-contamination, contamination from the environment, and poor hygiene, which implies unwashed hands (Post et al., 2019). Coming into direct contact with animals such as chickens and pigs can also cause Salmonella infection. Salmonella is a bacterium that requires acidic conditions to survive, and they compete with other bacteria in the stomach. Hence, they will colonize both small and large intestines in the human body. When a person comes into direct contact with animals, they are also likely to be infected. Animals carry such bacteria in their bodies; hence, touching their feces may be a significant reason for the disease (Indar-Harrinauth et al., 2001). One may come into direct contact and fail to maintain hygienic standards. The last one is a person-to-person infection, where Salmonella is transmitted from one infected individual to another in many ways. They may include shaking hands, using one eating spoon with the infected individual, and even kissing. Therefore, individuals must consider the factors mentioned above to avoid the harmful impacts of the condition.

Incidence and Prevalence of Salmonella

Incidence of the total serotypes measures the frequency with which an event is revealed in a particular sample of the population over a given period. From table 1, the total sample population is 1,265,000 people. In the year 1997, the total number of events was 109 (Indar-Harrinauth et al., 2001). To find the incidence of Salmonella during this period, the following calculation would be performed:

Incidence= amount of events/population at risk
109/1265000
0.0000862 isolates

It, therefore, implies that there is a prevalence of 8.6 isolates per 100,000 people every year.

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Mortality Rate of Salmonella

Mortality rate indicates how frequent death defines a certain population over a given interval of time. The incidence can be used to refer to the frequency. Hence for this particular case, the incidences would represent deaths that occur in any year. The following formula will apply:

Mortality rate= deaths occurring in a given years/population size*10n
8.6/1265000*1010
6.7%

Odds Ratio

The odds ratio determines the number of times individuals are exposed to risk factors. From table 2, it can be implied that individuals ate eggs in shells at least 8.8 times per 10 years (Indar-Harrinauth et al., 2001). Furthermore, 18.9 cases resulted from undercooked eggs (Indar-Harrinauth et al., 2001). In simple terms, it can indicate that individuals are exposed to some of the risk factors due to their consumption habits.

References

Dang-Xuan, S., Nguyen-Viet, H., Pham-Duc, P., Unger, F., Tran-Thi, N., Grace, D., & Makita, K. (2019). Risk factors associated with Salmonella spp. prevalence along smallholder pig value chains in Vietnam. International Journal of Food Microbiology, 290, 105-115. Web.

Indar-Harrinauth, L., Daniels, N., Prabhakar, P., Brown, C., Baccus-Taylor, G., Comissiong, E., & Hospedales, J. (2001). Emergence of Salmonella enteritidis phage type 4 in the Caribbean: Case-control study in Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 32(6), 890-896. Web.

Post, A. S., Diallo, S. N., Guiraud, I., Lompo, P., Tahita, M. C., Maltha, J., Van Puyvelde, S., Mattheus, W., Ley, B., Thriemer, K., Rouamba, E., Derra, K., Deborggraeve, S., Tinto, H., & Jacobs, J. (2019). Supporting evidence for a human reservoir of invasive non-Typhoidal Salmonella from household samples in Burkina Faso. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases, 13(10), 1-18. Web.

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