Risks of salmonellosis (Salmonella)
Learn what the risks of salmonellosis are and who is most at risk.
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What are the risks of getting salmonellosis?
Your risk of getting salmonellosis is highest if you eat certain raw or undercooked foods contaminated with Salmonella, especially:
- meat, particularly pork and ground beef
Other foods and beverages that increase your risk include:
- homemade products containing raw eggs or unpasteurized dairy, such as:
- ice cream
- cookie dough
- salad dressings
- hollandaise sauce
- unpasteurized dairy products, including:
- raw milk cheeses
- raw milk or cream
- cream-filled desserts and toppings
- raw fruits and vegetables, and their juices, particularly sprouts (this is rare)
You are at risk of being exposed to Salmonella in your kitchen if you do not:
- wash your hands properly after:
- using the bathroom
- handling raw meat, eggs or poultry
- touching pets and their food, treats, toys or waste
- wash fresh fruits and vegetables before eating them
- clean work surfaces thoroughly before and after preparing raw meat, poultry and other foods
Who is most at risk?
You are most at risk for salmonellosis if you:
- are a pregnant woman
- are 60 years of age or older
- are a child under 5 years of age
- have a weakened immune system (cannot easily fight disease)
What are the risks of complications?
In rare cases, there can be risks of severe complications if Salmonella spreads from the intestines to:
- other organs
- the blood stream
Some people may experience long-term symptoms, such as reactive arthritis (Reiter’s syndrome). These symptoms usually appear 3 to 4 weeks after you start feeling sick.
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