Five Complications of Salmonellosis

Five Complications of Salmonellosis

Salmonella infection usually isn't life-threatening and its symptoms are very similar to flu. So sometimes, people may not take care about it , especially for some adults. They may eat some medicines by themselves and may recover soon. However, the development of complications can be very dangerous and infected quickly among certain people - especially infants and young children, older adults, transplant recipients, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems.

Stomach or bowel disorders

It is a very obvious symptom. Under normal situation, our body can produce many natural defenses against salmonella infection. Just take strong stomach acid for an example, it can kill many types of salmonella bacteria. However, if the lower the stomach's acidity is, the more salmonella bacteria will survive. This also means the strong stomach acid can increase the number of "good" bacteria in your intestines, which may enhance your ability to fight off a salmonella infection.

Immune problems

Some scientific researches have showed that a person’s weakened immune system may greatly increase his/her risk of catching salmonella. It will be highly possible to interfere with the ability of a person to fight infection and disease. Some very serious diseases may occur, including:


Sickle cell disease


Anti-rejection drugs taken after organ transplants



Scientists also have discovered that once the immune system had been weakened, the harmful bacteria would be easier to invade people’s body, and prevent an elite force of cells to destroy the invader, causing salmonella.


Dehydration occurs if you can't drink enough to replace the fluid or to carry out its normal functions you're losing from diarrhea, you may become dehydrated. Meanwhile some warning signs will happen, including:

Urinating less than usual or dark-colored urine

Dry mouth and tongue

Sunken eyes

No tears when crying

Being more tired than usual

Irritability or confusion

The serious dehydration will make a person being in a coma.


Why people are very afraid of getting bacteremia? Because its complications can cause people’s death. It has concluded that approximately 5% of nontyphoidal Salmonella infections will make patients develop bacteremia. As is known to all, bacteremia is the presence of bacteria in the bloodstream. It may be caused by the infections of salmonella, including some ordinary activities (such as vigorous toothbrushing), dental or medical procedures, or from infections (such as pneumonia - it is one of the most common causes of death worldwide.) Once you got salmonella infection, its bacteremia will enter your bloodstream, and infect tissues throughout your body, including:

The urinary system (urinary tract infection) The tissues surrounding the brain and spinal cord (meningitis)

The lining of the heart or valves (endocarditis)

The bones or bone marrow (osteomyelitis)

Reactive arthritis

Reactive arthritis, also known as Reiter's syndrome, is a disease that causes redness and inflammation in various joints in the body, especially the knees, feet, toes, hips and ankles. There are many reasons may develop this condition after you've had an infection, particularly a sexually transmitted infection, salmonella or food poisoning. If people have had salmonella, they will be at higher risk of developing reactive arthritis from salmonella infection. The symptoms of reactive arthritis may typically cause eye irritation, painful urination, and painful joints. Worst of all, most cases will recover within a few months, but some others will continue to experience complications for years and they may need more treatment to relieve the symptoms.

What is the treatment for salmonella?

Most people who have had salmonella but with stronger immune system may recover in four to seven days and they do not need any treatment. However, an urgent medical assistance is needed, if these conditions occur in some people with lower immune system.

The best way for us to avoid salmonella is not eating foods contaminated with animal feces and have a good habit of washing your hands. The last but the most important one is to strengthen your immune system.