Salmonellosis In Children: Symptoms, Signs, Treatment

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Salmonellosis In Children: Symptoms, Signs, Treatment
Salmonellosis In Children: Symptoms, Signs, Treatment

Video: Salmonellosis In Children: Symptoms, Signs, Treatment

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Video: Salmonellosis - causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, pathology 2023, February

Salmonellosis in children is a dangerous infectious disease that can affect both children and adults. The child's body is most susceptible to various infections and the effects of negative factors. This is due to the immune system, which is weak in resistance and defense. Often in childhood, there is such an unpleasant infectious disease as salmonellosis. This is not surprising. Children often play on the street, pick up stray animals, pull dirty toys into their mouths, all this leads to various infectious infections, including salmonellosis… But if you do not start the treatment of this ailment in time, serious consequences can arise. Therefore, you need to know the main signs of salmonellosis in children, which will help you quickly determine the presence of this disease and provide timely treatment. Salmonellosis, the symptoms of which in children practically do not differ from those in an adult, strikes a heavy blow on the well-being of the child: he is worried about vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, and general weakness. The main cause of salmonellosis infection is poorly processed food of animal origin.

The content of the article:

  • 1 Causes of salmonellosis in children
  • 2 Manifestations of salmonellosis in children
  • 3 Symptoms of salmonellosis

    • 3.1 Gastrointestinal form
    • 3.2 Typhoid-like course of the disease in generalized form
    • 3.3 Septic variant of the course of the disease in generalized form
  • 4 Diagnosis of salmonellosis in children
  • 5 What actions to take until the doctor arrives
  • 6 Treatment of salmonellosis in children

    • 6.1 Drug therapy
    • 6.2 Independent measures in the fight against the disease
  • 7 Nuances of nutrition during and after treatment
  • 8 Prevention of salmonellosis in children

The causes of salmonellosis in children

Salmonellosis in children. Any of the types of Salmonella can develop freely in food products, while it does not change its color, smell and appearance. Animals and most often domestic animals (cattle, dogs, pigs) become the source of infection.

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

How is salmonellosis spread? The source of infection can be:

  1. Poorly processed or not thermally processed meat and dairy products. These products include bird eggs. Most of all, food products that have not been stored according to standards are susceptible to infection.
  2. Wild and domestic animals that never get sick with such an infectious disease, but are carriers of bacteria. The most common sources are hamsters, parrots and house turtles.

    It is enough for a child to kiss his pet to pick up harmful bacteria.

  3. Another person who suffers from this ailment.
  4. Lumps of dirt, dust and dried faeces, bacteria can still live in them for several months. It is not necessary for the child to swallow a piece of dirt. It is quite easy to breathe in the bacteria along with the dust. It is possible that bacteria can enter through the mouth when the kid has previously stroked a street dog.
  5. In some cases, you can contract the disease through the water in which these bacteria live and multiply.

The main sources of infection are distinguished:

  • Food type. The pathogen enters the child's gastrointestinal tract while eating contaminated food. This is usually due to the low heat treatment of the food. Also, infection can occur while drinking untreated water.
  • Contact and household. Typically, this route of infection occurs in infants. Infection can occur through the unclean hands of nursing staff or parents, through toys, pacifiers, various care products, and inhalation of dust particles.
  • Transplacental. This type of infection involves infection of a pregnant or lactating woman and, as a result, an unborn child. Pathogens can enter the fetus through the intrauterine route or through the mother's breast milk.

The greatest sensitivity to salmonellosis in children aged 3 months to 2-3 years. The main localization of the pathogen is the rectal area. During its reproduction, bacteria enter the bloodstream and lymph flow.

Food is one of the most common sources of contamination.

Manifestations of salmonellosis in children

Salmonellosis in children. The incubation period for infection with a disease lasts 5-6 hours. Its duration depends on the source of infection and the volume of pathogens in the baby's body. Depending on the form of the disease, salmonellosis, symptoms in children, the degree of their manifestation and sequence may vary.

The types of ailment are as follows:

  1. Specific:

    • gastrointestinal;
    • typhoid;
    • septic.
  2. Non-specific:

    • subclinical;
    • erased;
    • bacteria-carrying.
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

The gastrointestinal appearance is most common in children. Various organs of the gastrointestinal tract are infected. A sign of salmonellosis can be gastritis, which manifests itself in older children. The incubation period is not long and is only one day. The disease has a very pronounced onset and is characterized by the following symptoms:

  • pain in the epigastric region;
  • vomiting;
  • increased body temperature;
  • general malaise;
  • dryness of the tongue and the appearance of plaque on it.

Salmonellosis symptoms

Salmonellosis in children. The incubation period lasts on average 12-24 hours, with the contact-household method of infection, the incubation period can be lengthened to 8 days.

There are several clinical forms of salmonellosis:

  • gastrointestinal (localized);
  • generalized form, proceeding in the form of septic and typhoid-like variants;
  • bacteriocarrier;
  • subclinical form.

In most cases, gastrointestinal salmonellosis occurs in infants and children under 1 year of age. With this type of pathology, the internal organs of the digestive system are damaged. It manifests itself in the form of gastritis, enterocolitis, gastroenteritis.


The first signs of this type of lesion may be as follows:

  • an increase in body temperature up to 39-40 degrees or it can turn into a subfebrile form;
  • the occurrence of vomiting;
  • pain in the abdomen;
  • there may be abundant loose stools, in which the presence of particles of undigested food is possible. The structure of the stool has a greenish tint, accompanied by a sour odor;
  • bloating;
  • a state of dehydration due to frequent vomiting and diarrhea.

In addition, E. coli Salmonella in children causes general intoxication, heart palpitations. Occasionally, cramps and cold sweats may occur. The state of asthenia and low blood pressure can be observed for a long time after the acute symptoms completely disappear.

Gastrointestinal form

Salmonellosis in children. The most common form of the disease. It begins acutely with an increase in body temperature to 39 C, the appearance of weakness, chills and headaches. Patients complain of pain in the epigastric region, accompanied by nausea and repeated vomiting. A little later diarrhea joins.

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

The severity of symptoms depends on the severity of salmonellosis. With a mild form of the disease, intoxication syndrome can be weak, single vomiting, loose stools up to 5 times a day. The moderate form is characterized by an increase in body temperature to 38-39 C, repeated vomiting, watery stools up to 10 times a day. Since there is a significant loss of fluid for the body, patients have tachycardia and a decrease in blood pressure, and if untreated, dehydration may develop.

In a severe form of the disease, the intoxication of the body is sharply expressed, repeated vomiting, stools more than 10 times a day, watery, fetid with an admixture of mucus.

In patients, an increase in the spleen and liver is found, jaundice may appear. As a result of the loss of a significant amount of fluid by the body, a violation of water-salt metabolism and dehydration develops. Against this background, tachycardia, a pronounced decrease in blood pressure, dysfunction of the urinary and nervous systems occur.

Typhoid variant of the course of the disease in generalized form

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

The first symptoms of the disease may be intestinal disorders against the background of general intoxication of the body. After 1–2 days, intestinal manifestations of salmonellosis disappear, and intoxication syndrome increases. Fever is most often wavy (alternating periods of high temperature with periods of normal body temperature).

Signs accompanying this condition:

  1. Loose stools with a watery structure, which can occur 3-5 times a day.
  2. Vomiting attacks.
  3. Flatulence.
  4. Intoxication with malaise, weakness and headaches.
  5. Dryness appears in the mouth, and a thickening of the tongue may also occur.
  6. A rash with a hemorrhagic character appears on the skin.

In most patients, on days 2–3 from the onset of the disease, a herpetic rash may appear, and from 6–7 days, a roseolous rash appears, localized mainly on the skin of the abdomen. The abdomen is swollen, at the end of the first week of the disease, the liver and spleen enlarge. Intoxication syndrome can last up to 3 weeks.

Septic variant of the course of the disease in generalized form

Salmonellosis in children. This form of the disease is the most severe. The disease has an acute onset and in the first days mimics a typhoid-like course, but the patient's condition deteriorates sharply.

Fever occurs with a large daily range, chills and intense sweating.

What are the symptoms of a septic form?

  • An increase in body temperature to 40 degrees and above.
  • Vomiting and diarrhea, loose stools may contain mucus and blood clots.
  • Damage to the brain and its membranes.
  • Fever and excessive sweating are common;
  • Increased heart rate.

This form of the disease is difficult to treat with antibiotics, and secondary septic foci develop, which can complicate the diagnosis of salmonellosis. Purulent foci are often formed in the musculoskeletal system, tonsillitis, meningitis, lymphadenitis occur.

Diagnosis of salmonellosis in children

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

Typical forms of the disease always have a pronounced operative onset. The temperature rise is observed for a long period of time. Vomiting is possible, not frequent, but prolonged. Vomiting occurs regardless of food intake. Specialists, when examining a patient, pay attention to plaque on the tongue, soreness and rumbling in the right side of the abdomen and to feces with an unpleasant odor. In order to establish an accurate diagnosis, it is necessary to conduct bacteriological and serological studies.

For bacteriological analysis, vomit, gastric lavage, feces, urine, blood, or cerebrospinal fluid are usually taken. A blood test must be done throughout the treatment of the disease.

Serologic tests are needed to detect antibodies in the blood of an infected baby. In milder forms of the disease, such an analysis may give a negative answer. This also applies to a newborn with a severe form of the disease.

Bacterial culture of feces and vomit

Salmonellosis in children. If there are suspicions that the disease has turned into a generalized form, urine, bile, gastric and intestinal washings are also used. Among the strengths of the analysis is its high sensitivity. It allows not only to identify infectious agents, but also to assess their number, activity and resistance to various antibiotics.

The main disadvantage of the method is its duration (up to 10 days), while any delays can cause irreversible complications in the child's body.

Express diagnostics

Kits for immunofluorescence and latex agglutination are commercially available today. And therefore, having found signs of salmonellosis in a child, before contacting a doctor, you can independently check it for the reliability of the diagnosis. In the medical environment, for express diagnostics, testing for ELISA, RIA, RKA, RLA is used.

Serological blood test for antibodies

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

This study is carried out when it is already known for sure that the child is infected, in order to determine the success of the prescribed course of treatment. For the first time, blood sampling is done a week after the diagnosis of salmonellosis and 10 days later. The procedure is repeated upon completion of inpatient treatment. The interest of doctors is caused by an increase in antibody titer, the minimum diagnostic value of which is 1: 200.

Depending on the type of disease and the stage of its course, tests are assigned to children on an individual basis. However, if all the symptoms of an epidemiological outbreak of salmonellosis are present, in addition to them, a bacteriological analysis of the remains of contaminated food and washes from the dishes in which it was located is also carried out.

What actions to take until the doctor arrives

Salmonellosis in children. If a parent notices obvious manifestations of an intestinal infection in his child, then the first step is to prevent dehydration. Thanks to this, the patient's condition can be alleviated. This condition is provoked by profuse vomiting, diarrhea and high body temperature.

How can you prevent dehydration? Oral rehydration agents are the most effective options. These are special powders that are preliminarily diluted in liquid.

If it is not possible to purchase such a powder, then you must prepare the solution yourself. To do this, add 2 tablespoons of sugar, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of baking soda to 1 liter of liquid. Mix the whole mass well and water the child intensively. If signs appear in a newborn baby, then give the child a solution with a syringe.

Treatment of salmonellosis in children

Salmonellosis in children. The symptoms and treatment of salmonellosis in children are different from those in adults. Treatment of children infected with salmonellosis must necessarily be a set of medical measures. Treatment of salmonellosis in children includes adherence to bed rest, diet and activities aimed at eliminating the pathogen.

The patient is supposed to take antibiotics. The selection of the drug must be correct, since it must act on the causative agent of the infection. Therefore, only the attending doctor can prescribe a medicine after a repeated laboratory analysis.

If you suspect a food route of infection, it is imperative to do gastric lavage. If the baby has frequent vomiting, loose stools and a sharp decrease in urination, then drip infusion of solutions is necessary.

Diet plays a huge role in the treatment of the disease. The first 3-5 days you need to limit yourself in eating. Babies under one year of age should only be fed breast milk. Children over a year can only eat grated food with the addition of steamed meat. It is necessary to strictly limit the use of too fatty foods. For the duration of the illness, it is important to exclude foods that enhance fermentation and intestinal motility.

If the disease is severe, then the patients need prompt hospitalization. Children under one year old demand the same.

Drug therapy

Salmonellosis in children. By its nature, Salmonella is a bacteria. Therefore, it would be logical to assume that it should be treated with various antibacterial drugs, right?

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

Remember, only a doctor can prescribe antibiotics for salmonellosis!

Thinking in this way, you risk not only not healing your child, but also causing him much more significant harm. The fact is that the symptoms of salmonellosis, typhoid fever and a number of other infections are very similar. And drugs for salmonellosis for children are quite different from the same drugs for dysentery.

Even doctors can unambiguously determine what kind of ailment struck your baby only after a thorough diagnosis. And an incorrectly prescribed treatment will only provoke an exacerbation.

Remember, only a doctor can prescribe antibiotics for salmonellosis! All you need to do is deliver the baby to the pediatrician as quickly as possible or call him at home.

Independent measures in the fight against the disease

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

Salmonellosis in children. As already mentioned, the causative agent of salmonellosis is extremely specific and is characterized by increased resistance to cold and a number of antibiotics. Therefore, even drugs such as Enterofuril cannot always help. However, this does not mean that you need to be inactive until the doctor arrives.

In some cases, the infection manifests itself in just a couple of hours, and the rapid dehydration of the body can cause irreparable harm to the child. As we have already found out, we cannot stuff him with antibiotics, however, it is quite possible to alleviate the condition of the baby by preventing his dehydration.

This can be done either with the help of specialized powders for oral rehydration, which can be easily found in every pharmacy, or using the following recipe:

Dissolve baking soda (1 tsp) in clean still water (1 L), then sugar (2 tsp), and then salt (1 tsp). Mix the resulting saline solution thoroughly and solder the child with it until the ambulance arrives

This drink does not taste particularly pleasant, therefore, if your baby flatly refuses to drink it, offer him any other drink, be it water, tea or compote. You should avoid liquids containing various dyes and chemicals (from the same soda).

If it is not possible to give a child a drink in the traditional way, for example, if a month-old baby is dehydrated, an ordinary syringe will come to the rescue (of course, without a needle!).

Fill it with the solution described above and carefully pour the baby into the corner of the mouth before the ambulance arrives. At the same time, be sure to hold the head so that it does not choke.

Nutrition nuances during and after treatment

Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

What can a child eat with salmonellosis? This issue is no less important than the others discussed in this article. Correct nutritional correction contributes not only to a speedy recovery, but also to the restoration of compromised immunity.

The optimal product for babies in the first year of life has been and remains unpasteurized breast milk. It not only easily replenishes the needs of a weakened body for trace elements and vitamins, but also provides it with proteins, carbohydrates, fats and a whole range of protective, biologically active substances.

If the age of the toddler has already passed the mark of 4 months, and he himself eats by artificial feeding, then for the first 1-2 weeks his menu includes:

  • fermented milk mixtures;
  • 10% rice and / or buckwheat porridge, boiled in water;
  • vegetable puree.

Salmonellosis in children. The diet of older children, who just got sick the other day, is carefully wiped, easily digestible food that has undergone mandatory heat treatment. It can be soups, and diverse vegetable dishes, and boiled rice, etc. Meat and fish are allowed to be included in the menu, but only on condition that they were steamed.

The ban includes:

  • fermented milk products that enhance peristalsis (wave-like contraction of the walls) of the intestine;
  • flour products made from rye;
  • any sweets and pickles;
  • vegetables and fruits served raw;
  • berries and various spices.
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children
Symptoms of salmonellosis in children

The duration of the course is 27-30 days from the moment the disease is diagnosed. However, depending on the complexity of its course, to restore the child's strength, nutritional adjustments may continue after his recovery.

Since the disease is quite specific, the diet after salmonellosis is prescribed by the treating doctor individually. However, in general terms:

  • to be excluded from the diet for a certain period of time: dairy products, fatty and spicy dishes, fresh fruits and vegetables, sweets, some types of legumes, cabbage and juices;
  • the basis of the menu for this time should be: dairy-free porridge, soups with meat, but not cooked in meat broth (i.e. meat is cooked separately and then added to the ready-made soup), soufflé from low-fat poultry and meat, baked fruits (e.g. baked apples or bananas).

If, among other things, the child suffers from food allergies, fermentopathy or dysbiosis, his diet for salmonellosis should be adjusted for these diseases. All foods with a high content of allergens are added to the list of prohibited ones, and the list of obligatory dishes is supplemented by various decoctions, vitamins and other means used in phago and immunotherapy.

Prevention of salmonellosis in children

Salmonellosis in children. Prevention measures should be aimed at eliminating the source of infection. It is important to observe the sanitary regime. If you have pets at home, you need to treat them.

Measures to prevent the spread of infection in preschool educational institutions are to isolate the infected child as early as possible. These actions are aimed at preventing an outbreak of the epidemic. After the child has fully recovered, which is confirmed by research results, the baby's isolation stops.

From all that has been said, we can summarize that salmonellosis is a very dangerous disease, especially in relation to infants. Death is the most common outcome. When the first symptoms appear, parents need to urgently consult a doctor.

All measures aimed at increasing the defenses of the child's body, and above all, a healthy lifestyle, contribute to the prevention of salmonellosis. If one of the family members falls ill with salmonellosis, after isolation of the patient, it is necessary to disinfect and examine family members (bacteriological examination - fecal analysis), and also prescribe a Salmonella bacteriophage for preventive purposes (1-2 tablets 3-4 times a day, depending on from age, within 5-6 days).

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