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Swimming-Associated Haemorrhagic Colitis Due to Escherichia coli 0157:H7 Infection: Evidence of Prolonged Contamination of a Fresh Water Lake

D. Ackman, S. Marks, P. Mack, M. Caldwell, T. Root and G. Birkhead
Epidemiology and Infection
Vol. 119, No. 1 (Aug., 1997), pp. 1-8
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4617371
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Swimming-Associated Haemorrhagic Colitis Due to Escherichia coli 0157:H7 Infection: Evidence of Prolonged Contamination of a Fresh Water Lake
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Abstract

We describe an Escherichia coli 0157:H7 outbreak associated with a fresh water lake at a county park. Campers were surveyed for diarrhoeal illness within 10 days of their visit, and a case-control study of day visitors was conducted. A confirmed case was a symptomatic person with a stool culture positive for E. coli 0157:H7 and a probable case was a person with bloody diarrhoea. Clinical isolates of E. coli 0157 were subtyped by pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE). In the camper survey, 12 (38%) of 32 swimmers had a diarrhoeal illness (relative risk [RR] = 12·4; 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1·7-89·7). For the case-control study, the 12 cases were more likely than controls to have purposefully ingested lake water (odds ratio [OR] = 6·9, 95% CI = 0·9-55·8). The PFGE patterns of six clinical isolates were indistinguishable. This report further demonstrates that contaminated fresh-water lakes can be the source of community outbreaks of E. coli O157:H7.

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