Treatment of botulism

Learn how botulism is diagnosed and treated.

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How botulism is diagnosed

Botulism is diagnosed by a health care provider based on symptoms. Laboratory testing of stool, blood, stomach contents and suspicious foods are used to confirm the diagnosis.

How botulism is treated

Treatment for botulism may include:

  • supportive medical care in a hospital
  • the administration of botulism antitoxin (medication that blocks the toxin)

Most people recover from botulism, if diagnosed and treated quickly. However, recovery can take several weeks to months.

In cases of wound botulism, the wound should be cleaned and drained. Antibiotics may be given.

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