Listeria infection is also medically called listeriosis. This seriousdisease is food-borne and has mild symptoms, so that many people do not evenknow that they are affected, because a listeria infection has the similarsymptoms as flu and can be mistaken for it. This disease is very dangerous and even life-threatening for the pregnantwomen, as well as for those whose immune system is not strong enough. The main cause of this disease is the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes. This bacteriabest survive in water, soil and animals. By eating contaminated food, such asraw vegetables, unpasteurized milk and infected animal meat, people can be exposed to the bacteria.
Symptoms of listeria
Listeria infection has its characteristic symptoms that may appear right atthe beginning, or two months from the time when the person consummatedcontaminated food. The symptoms that are most common for listeria are fever and muscle aches, aswell as nausea and diarrhea. In the cases when listeria infection extends to the nervous system, severalother signs may warn the person of its presence. Headache, confusion, imbalance, and convulsions may be the symptoms that listeria also affected nervous system.Sometimes, stiff neck may also appear as a sign.
Listeria infection has mild symptoms when a woman is pregnant, but it can cause premature delivery or miscarriage. However, the baby is notsafe and may die before the birth or may face with the serious infection when born.After the birth, the baby affected by listeria does not want to eat andfrequently vomits. Irritability and fever are also the symptoms that may occurin babies with listeria infection.
When some of the above mentioned symptoms are detected, it is very importantto visit a doctor in order to prevent or avoid the further complications that may occur, such as, for example, bacterial meningitis or encephalitis. There are several things that we can do in order to prevent listeriainfection. It is very important to wash the hands with warm and soupy water, andnot just before the eating, but also before preparing any food, because in that way, thebacteria cannot be transmitted. Furthermore, when going to the shopping, the raw foods must be separated fromready-to-eat foods. Raw vegetables must be thoroughly washed before eatingunder plenty of running water. Every kind of meat should be cooked thoroughly, because the bacteria aredestroyed by cooking.