Campylobacteriosis: A Food Borne Disease With Diverse Clinical Presentations
Campylobacteriosis is an important food borne acute infectious diarrheal disease. It mainly occurs through consumption of raw or undercooked poultry meat, unpasteurized milk and contaminated water. Campylobacter species have been isolated from chicken, turkey, duck, pork and beef. Campylobacter jejuni is responsible for 80-90% of all enteric Campylobacter infections, followed by C. coli for 5-10% cases. Clinical illness ranges from mild self-limiting, non-inflammatory diarrhea to severe inflammatory bloody diarrhea associated with bacteremia. Extra-intestinal infections like bacteremia, peritonitis, cholecystities, meningitis etc. have also been reported. Around 10% of immuno-compromised patients are at risk of bacteremia. An important post-infectious sequel of C. jejuni infection is Guillain-Barré syndrome (GBS), an acute neurological disease marked by ascending paralysis. GBS is incited by molecular mimicry between sialylated lipo-oligosaccharides of bacterial cell wall and ganglioside epitopes on human peripheral nerves, resulting in autoimmune-driven nerve damage. Culture is the gold standard for diagnosis of Campylobacter infection but its sensitivity is low in GBS patients. Serological and nucleic acid-based assays are used to improve the sensitivity. Development of resistance by Campylobacter spp. to macrolides and fluoroquinolones has resulted in treatment failure. Good practices like hand wash with soap, knowledge about cross-contamination in kitchen and poultry shops, avoidance of consumption of undercooked animal products, unpasteurized milk and untreated surface water can help in preventing the infection.
Key words - Antibiotic resistance, Campylobacter, Campylobacteriosis, Diarrhea, Guillain-Barré syndrome.