What are the possible complications of Shigella infection?

Updated: Apr 03, 2018
  • Author: Jaya Sureshbabu, MBBS, MRCPCH(UK), MRCPI(Paeds), MRCPS(Glasg), DCH(Glasg); Chief Editor: Russell W Steele, MD  more...
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See the list below:

  • Dehydration is the most common complication of shigellosis.

  • Other reported complications include the following:

    • CNS complications

      • Seizures were previously thought to be caused by the elaboration of Stx. The etiology is presently uncertain. [37]

      • Syndrome of inappropriate secretion of antidiuretic hormone with profound hyponatremia may occur.

      • Lethargy, meningismus, delirium, seizures, and hypoglycemia may be observed.

      • Encephalopathy and meningitis are rare and may be lethal.

    • HUS associated with strains that produce Stx (eg, S dysenteriae serotype 1 and S flexneri 2a) [38, 39]

    • Septicemia and DIC, particularly in malnourished children

    • Arthritis

      • Postinfectious arthritis is a late complication of S flexneri infection, especially in persons with HLA-B27 marker.

      • Arthritis, conjunctivitis, urethritis syndrome is most common in adults with HLA-B27 marker (occurs 2-5 wk after enteritis).

    • GI complications

    • Other manifestations

      • Conjunctivitis, iritis, corneal ulcers, cystitis, myocarditis, and vaginitis are uncommon.

      • Ekiri syndrome is a rare syndrome that consists of extreme toxicity, seizures, hyperpyrexia, and headache; it can be rapidly fatal due to brain edema. [37]

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