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Revista argentina de microbiología

versión On-line ISSN 1851-7617


GOMEZ, D. et al. Isolation of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli strains during a gastrointestinal outbreak at a day care center in Mar del Plata City. Rev. argent. microbiol. [online]. 2005, vol.37, n.4, pp. 176-183. ISSN 1851-7617.

From October 15 to November 8, 2003, a gastrointestinal outbreak occurred at a day care center in a Hospital in Mar del Plata City. Fourteen out of 80 (17.5%) children, mean age 23.6 ± 13.9 months, and the mother of one of them had diarrhea. One case developed hemolytic uremic syndrome. No conclusive evidence of the origin of the outbreak was found, but the epidemic curve suggested person-to-person spread. The usual practices at the place where infant milk formula was prepared at the day care center, together with the inadequate infrastructure conditions and hygiene practices at the kitchen of the hospital, were considered risk factors. One case had Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) O103:H2 infection and other STEC O26:H11.The duration of shedding for the child with O26:H11 infection was 37 days. In the other symptomatic children, the pathogen was not recovered from fecal samples collected 6 or more days after the onset of the illness. This emphasizes that the collection of early samples is necessary to recover STEC strains. In order to prevent and control enteric diseases in day care facilities the following measures are necessary: optimal hygiene standards, early case reporting, and exclusion of those who remain culture-positive.

Palabras clave : gastrointestinal outbreak; STEC O103:H2 and O26:H11; long-term shedding.

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