The CDC has reported an outbreak of multidrug-resistant Salmonella infections associated with raw turkey products. As of February 2019, 279 individuals have been infected across 41 states and the District of Columbia. A total of 107 individuals have required hospitalization and 1 death has been attributed to the outbreak. Many brands and types of raw turkey have been recalled due to this outbreak, including those branded for human and pet consumption. The CDC recommends discarding and avoiding recalled products, recommends against feeding raw turkey to pets, consuming raw or undercooked turkey, and recommends decontaminating surfaces that have come into contact with raw turkey. Turkey should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F, which includes reheating leftovers. The CDC also underscores the importance of proper handwashing after handling raw turkey.
The incubation period for salmonella gastroenteritis is 8-48 hours following ingestion of contaminated food. Acute salmonella gastroenteritis can be caused by both typhoidal and non-typhoidal species. Patients typically exhibit fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, cramping abdominal pain, and grossly bloody diarrhea that may last 3-5 days. Acute salmonella gastroenteritis may be difficult to differentiate from other causes of gastroenteritis based on clinical symptomatology alone, and requires stool culture for definitive diagnosis.
In uncomplicated cases, symptomatic management is the standard of care and patients are expected to recover in 4-7 days. More severe cases may require antibiotic treatment on an individualized basis. Some areas are reporting emergence of multidrug resistant strains. Providers should refer to their local antibiograms for resistance patterns. Those at risk for more severe disease include those that are elderly, immunocompromised, malnourished, and those with HIV.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Outbreak of Multidrug-Resistant Salmonella Infections Linked to Raw Turkey Products
Current Medical Diagnosis and Treatment 2019: Chapter 33: Bacterial & Chlamydial Infections