Listeriosis: Symptoms & Signs

Medically Reviewed on 9/10/2019

Listeriosis is an infectious disease.

In healthy people, the infection may not produce signs and symptoms, or it may cause only a mild illness. But newborns, the elderly, pregnant women, and those with a weakened immune system may have more serious disease. Symptoms and signs can include

Cause of listeriosis

Infection with the bacteria Listeria monocytogenes causes listeriosis. The bacteria are very common and are often associated with farm animals. Humans acquire the infection via eating food that is contaminated with Listeria. These foods are often contaminated with animal feces or soil. Drinking inadequately treated or unpasteurized milk products is another source of infection.

Other listeriosis symptoms and signs

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.