SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – What is Shigella?

According to the Centers for Disease Control, Shigellosis is an infectious disease caused by Shigella bacteria. It is extremely contagious and the germs can stay in the stool for up to two weeks after symptoms cease. A person can become infected by swallowing recreational water (pool, lake, etc) contaminated with germs.

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Symptoms include:

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  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Stomach cramps
  • Need to pass stool even when the bowels are empty

However, not all people who are infected exhibit symptoms and the infection generally resolves without treatment within a week. A patient should contact a health care provider if they exhibit the following symptoms:

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  • Fever
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Severe stomach cramping or tenderness
  • Dehydrated
  • Feel very sick

The CDC advises patients to not use anti-diarrheal medicine because it can make symptoms worse. A doctor may prescribe antibiotics.