Which food-borne pathogens cause bacterial gastroenteritis?

Updated: Jul 17, 2018
  • Author: Jennifer Lynn Bonheur, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Particular foods are associated with certain bacterial infections. Ingestion of raw or contaminated food, particularly raw milk and meat, is a common cause of bacterial gastroenteritis. The following list outlines organisms that cause food poisoning:

  • Dairy - Campylobacter, Salmonella, Listeria, and Staphylococcus species

  • Eggs - Salmonella species

  • Meats - C perfringens and Salmonella, Aeromonas, Campylobacter, and Staphylococcus species

  • Ground beef - Enterohemorrhagic E coli

  • Poultry - Campylobacter species

  • Pork - C perfringens and Y enterocolitica

  • Seafood - Aeromonas, Plesiomonas, Vibrio species, and astrovirus

  • Oysters - Plesiomonas and Vibrio species and calicivirus

  • Vegetables - Aeromonas species and C perfringens

  • Alfalfa sprouts - Enterohemorrhagic E coli and Salmonella species

  • Fried rice - Bacillus species

  • Custards, mayonnaise - Staphylococcus species

A study by Calbo et al reported a foodborne nosocomial outbreak due to extended-spectrum β-lactamase (ESBL)–producing Klebsiella pneumoniae. [20] This may be the first reported hospital outbreak that provides evidence that food can be a transmission vector for ESBL K pneumoniae.

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