Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
CDC Home Search Health Topics A-Z
Healthy Pets Healthy People


Health Information
Browse by Animal
Browse by Disease
Prevention Tools
For People at Extra Risk
For Health Professionals
Go To...
Glossary
Resources
Outbreak Response and Prevention Branch
 
 

 

 

Navigation Bar Link to NCID Contact Us page Link to HPHP Home Link to Health Benefits

Yersinia enterocolitica and Pigs

What is yersiniosis?

Yersiniosis (yer-SIN-ee-O-sis) is a disease caused by the bacterium Yersinia enterocolitica. People with yersiniosis can have different symptoms depending on how old they are. People can start to get sick 4 to 7 days after infection and can be sick for 1 to 3 weeks. Young children usually have fever, stomach pain, and diarrhea. Adults do not get sick with yersiniosis as often, but they can feel pain on their right side and may have a fever. Usually, these signs go away after about 3 weeks but sometimes pain in joints, such as knees or wrists, can start after that and last for several months.

Can animals transmit yersiniosis to me?

Yes, some animals pass Yersinia enterocolitica in their feces (stool) and people can get sick from contact with infected feces. Several kinds of animals can carry this disease, but usually people get sick from pigs that are sick with yersiniosis. Other animals that can carry this disease include cats, dogs, horses, cows, rodents, and rabbits. People can also get yersiniosis by eating pork that is not cooked completely or by drinking contaminated milk.

How can I protect myself from getting yersiniosis?

  • Avoid eating raw or undercooked pork.
  • Consume only pasteurized milk or milk products.
  • Wash hands with soap and running water before eating and preparing food, after contact with animals, and after handling raw meat.
  • After handling raw chitterlings(food prepared from small intestine of pigs), clean hands and fingernails thoroughly with soap and water before touching infants or their toys, bottles, or pacifiers. Someone other than the foodhandler should care for children while chitterlings are being prepared.
  • Prevent cross-contamination in the kitchen: Use separate cutting boards for meat and other foods, and carefully clean all cutting boards, countertops, and utensils with soap and hot water after preparing raw meat.
  • Dispose of animal feces in a sanitary manner.

How can I find out more about yersiniosis?

Learn more about yersiniosis at CDC's Bacterial Disease Web site.

 



* Links to non-Federal organizations found at this site are provided solely as a service to our users. These links do not constitute an endorsement of these organizations or their programs by CDC or the Federal Government, and none should be inferred. CDC is not responsible for the content of the individual organization Web pages found at these links.

PDF Document Icon Please note: Some of these publications are available for download only as *.pdf files. These files require Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to be viewed. Please review the information on downloading and using Acrobat Reader software.

HPHP Home | Glossary | Contact Us
CDC Home | Search | Health Topics A-Z