Salmonella

For an update on the current Salmonella Enteritidis Outbreak visit http://www.cdc.gov/salmonella/enteritidis

Enteritidis, can be found on both the outside and inside of eggs that appear normal.  If eggs are eaten raw or undercooked, the bacterium can cause a person to become ill.

Photo: cdc.gov

Photo: cdc.gov

Salmonella

Eggs, like meat, poultry, milk, and other foods, are safe if they are properly handled.  Shell eggs are the safest when stored in the refrigerator, individually and thoroughly cooked, and eaten immediately.  The larger the number of Salmonella present in the egg, the more likely you could become ill.  Refrigerating eggs prevents Salmonella that may be present on the egg from multiplying.

Cooking reduces the number of bacteria present in an egg; however, an egg with a runny yolk still poses a greater risk when eaten than does a completely cooked egg.  Eggs that have undercooked egg whites and yolks have been linked to outbreaks of infection.  Eggs should be consumed immediately and not kept warm or at room temperature for more than 2 hours.

  1. Keep eggs refrgerted at ≤45° F (≤7° C) at all times.
  2. Discard cracked or dirty eggs.
  3. Wash hands, cooking utensils, and food preparation surfaces with soap and water after contact with raw eggs.
  4. Eggs should be cooked until both the white and the yolk are firm and eaten promptly after cooking.
  5. Do not keep eggs warm or at room temperature for more than 2 hours.
  6. Refrigerate unused or leftover egg-containing foods promptly.
  7. Avoid eating raw eggs.
  8. Avoid restaurant dishes made with raw or undercooked, unpasteurized eggs.  Restaurants should use pasteurized eggs in any recipe (such as Hollandaise sauce or Caesar salad dressing) that calls for raw eggs.
  9. Comsumption of raw or undercooked eggs should be avoided, especially by young children, elderly persons, and persons with weakened immune systems or debilitating illness.

Individuals at risk for getting SalmonellaEnteritidis are the elderly, infants, and those with impaired immune systems. 

Individuals who become infected usually experience fever, abdominal cramps, and diarrhea beginning 12 to 72 hours after consuming a contaminated food or beverage.  The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most persons recover without antibiotic treatment.  Diarrhea can be severe, and the person may be ill enough to require hospitalization.

Reference: CDC.gov

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