By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The Swedish Public Health Agency reported Thursday that the national Salmonella Coeln is now considered over.

Salmonella bacteria (red)/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

From the end of August to October, 52 people from 14 regions with the same strain of the bacterium fell ill.

The cases were aged 0-85 years (median 35 years) and about as many were women (n = 27) as men (n = 25). No new cases have fallen ill or been sampled with the outbreak strain since 26 October and the outbreak is now judged to be over.

The Swedish Public Health Agency has conducted a so-called case-case study based on surveys collected by the regional infection control units, where those who fell ill with salmonella answered questions about what they had eaten during the week before the illness. In the study, where responses from outbreak cases were compared to responses from salmonella cases that did not belong to the outbreak, it was found that there was a statistically significant relationship between disease with the outbreak strain and consumption of sprouts. A suspected link to sprouts had also been identified during a local investigation in one of the regions.

Based on when the outbreak cases have fallen ill and where sprouts have been consumed, it is believed that a suspected contaminated batch was delivered to grocery stores, wholesalers and commercial kitchens at the end of August. Sampling and analysis of remaining sprouts in cases of disease, as well as extensive sampling and analysis at the production stage have not shown salmonella.

The results of the epidemiological investigation show that fresh sprouts delivered at the end of August were the most probable source of the outbreak, but this has not been confirmed by microbiological analyzes.

Salmonella is an organism which can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Healthy persons infected with Salmonella often experience fever, diarrhea (which may be bloody), nausea, vomiting and abdominal pain. In rare circumstances, infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis and arthritis.

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