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Signs & Symptoms

What are the signs and symptoms of Salmonella infection?

Most people infected with Salmonella develop the following signs and symptoms 12-72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria:

  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Abdominal cramps

How long does the illness last?

  • The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people recover without treatment.
  • In some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the bloodstream and then to other places in the body.
  • In rare cases, Salmonella infection can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.

Who is more likely to have a severe illness?

  • Children younger than 5 years
  • Adults older than 65
  • People with weakened immune systems

For more information about Salmonella bacteria and steps you can take to reduce the risk of infection, see CDC’s Salmonella website.