Epidemiology of Escherichia Coli O157:H7 Outbreaks, United States, 1982-2002

Emerg Infect Dis. 2005 Apr;11(4):603-9. doi: 10.3201/eid1104.040739.

Abstract

Escherichia coli O157:H7 causes 73,000 illnesses in the United States annually. We reviewed E. coli O157 outbreaks reported to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to better understand the epidemiology of E. coli O157. E. coli O157 outbreaks (>or=2 cases of E. coli O157 infection with a common epidemiologic exposure) reported to CDC from 1982 to 2002 were reviewed. In that period, 49 states reported 350 outbreaks, representing 8,598 cases, 1,493 (17%) hospitalizations, 354 (4%) hemolytic uremic syndrome cases, and 40 (0.5%) deaths. Transmission route for 183 (52%) was foodborne, 74 (21%) unknown, 50 (14%) person-to-person, 31 (9%) waterborne, 11 (3%) animal contact, and 1 (0.3%) laboratory-related. The food vehicle for 75 (41%) foodborne outbreaks was ground beef, and for 38 (21%) outbreaks, produce.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cattle
  • Dairy Products / microbiology
  • Disease Outbreaks*
  • Disease Reservoirs
  • Escherichia coli Infections / epidemiology*
  • Escherichia coli Infections / microbiology
  • Escherichia coli O157 / isolation & purification*
  • Food Microbiology
  • Hemolytic-Uremic Syndrome / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Laboratory Infection / epidemiology
  • Meat / microbiology
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Vegetables / microbiology
  • Water Microbiology