What Is the Incubation Period for Listeriosis?

Véronique Goulet; Lisa A King; Véronique Vaillant; Henriette de Valk


BMC Infect Dis. 2013;13(11) 

In This Article


Our results indicate that the incubation period for listeriosis varies according to the clinical presentation of the disease. A much longer incubation period was observed for pregnancy-associated cases than for cases with other clinical forms. This information has implications for the investigation of food borne listeriosis outbreaks as the incubation period is used to determine the time period for which a food history is collected. We propose for CNS and bactaeriemia cases to take an exposure window of 14 days before the diagnosis and for pregnancy-associated cases, 6 weeks before the diagnosis. We believe that, for listeriosis outbreaks, adapting the exposure windows used to document patients' food histories according to the clinical form of infection will facilitate the identification of food products as the source of contamination.