Fast Five Quiz: Pets and Human Health Risks

Richard H. Sinert, DO


May 27, 2022

Freshly passed stool is the preferred specimen for isolation of nontyphoidal Salmonella species. As the disease duration increases, the sensitivity of blood cultures decreases, whereas the sensitivity of stool isolation increases. Because stool carriage of S typhi may be prolonged, the interpretation of positive results merits caution, and the diagnosis should be established only when accompanied by clinical findings that are typical of infection.

Radiologic findings in salmonellosis are nonspecific, and literature reports are scarce. The explanation lies in the fact that most individuals who develop acute Salmonella infection do not seek specialized medical assistance, do not undergo radiographic or endoscopic workup, and, when necessary, are treated empirically but successfully with supportive therapy and broad-spectrum antibiotic therapy.

Although the white blood cell count is usually within the reference range in patients with salmonellosis, approximately one quarter of patients with typhoid fever are leukopenic, neutropenic, or anemic. Thrombocytopenia is neither universal nor diagnostic.

The eosinophil count and sedimentation rate are typically low. A high sedimentation rate suggests abscess formation or osteomyelitis. Eosinophilia should prompt a search for concomitant parasitic infection.

Learn more about the workup of salmonellosis.


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