DOCTOR'S VIEW ARCHIVE
E. Coli in New Orleans Flood Waters
What is E. coli?
Non-pathogenic strains of E. coli -- those that do not cause disease -- are normal inhabitants of the intestinal tract in humans and animals. But certain strains of E. coli can cause severe diarrhea and infect the genital and urinary tracts.
What are E. coli symptoms?
The symptoms of E. coli include:
How is E. coli spread?
E. coli from the stool of infected persons can be spread by contact with, or drinking sewage-contaminated drinking water. This is now the concern in the flooded areas of New Orleans. It can also be spread to others if hygiene is inadequate. Another source of infection is from contaminated food, for example, from eating contaminated meat from animals infected with pathogenic E. coli.