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What are more serious cases of food poisoning?

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Some bacteria cause fewer cases of food poisoning but can make you very sick. They can even cause death. They include:

  • E. coli. This is the name of a type of bacteria found in the intestines of animals. You can get this from undercooked ground beef, unpasteurized milk, sprouts, or any food or liquid that has had contact with animal feces or sewage. Some strains are harmless. Others can make you very sick.
  • Listeria is an unusual bacterium that can grow in cold temperatures such as in the refrigerator. It's found in smoked fish, raw (unpasteurized) cheeses, ice cream, pates, hot dogs, and deli meats. Pregnant women and others with weakened immune systems can feel sick from milder infections from listeria within a day. Other people with a more serious listeria infection called listeriosis may not show symptoms for a week or even a couple of months. In addition to diarrhea and vomiting, listeria can cause unusual symptoms, including weakness, confusion, and a stiff neck. It can also be deadly. If you have a stiff neck with a fever, you may need antibiotics.

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Food Poisoning," "Food Poisoning Symptoms," "Food Poisoning: Causes."

UpToDate: "Patient education: Food poisoning (foodborne illness) (Beyond the Basics)."

CDC: "Burden of Foodborne Illness: Findings," "Foodborne Germs and Illnesses."

FDA: "Foodborne Illnesses: What You Need to Know."

U.S. Department of Agriculture: "Foodborne Illness: What Consumers Need to Know," "Foodborne Illness Peaks in Summer -- Why?" "Cooking for Groups: A Volunteer's Guide to Food Safety."

Foodsafety.gov: "Salmonella," "Clostridium perfringens," "Norovirus (Norwalk Virus)," "Campylobacter," "E. coli," "Listeria."

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on May 25, 2019

SOURCES:

Mayo Clinic: "Food Poisoning," "Food Poisoning Symptoms," "Food Poisoning: Causes."

UpToDate: "Patient education: Food poisoning (foodborne illness) (Beyond the Basics)."

CDC: "Burden of Foodborne Illness: Findings," "Foodborne Germs and Illnesses."

FDA: "Foodborne Illnesses: What You Need to Know."

U.S. Department of Agriculture: "Foodborne Illness: What Consumers Need to Know," "Foodborne Illness Peaks in Summer -- Why?" "Cooking for Groups: A Volunteer's Guide to Food Safety."

Foodsafety.gov: "Salmonella," "Clostridium perfringens," "Norovirus (Norwalk Virus)," "Campylobacter," "E. coli," "Listeria."

Reviewed by Sabrina Felson on May 25, 2019

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How can you prevent food poisoning from meat and poultry?

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