Do You Have Diarrhea?

It might be caused by a bacteria called Shigella.

Protect Yourself and Your Community

Shigella spreads VERY EASILY from one person to another. If you have diarrhea, FOLLOW these simple steps:

  • WASH YOUR HANDS, especially after going to the bathroom.
  • WAIT to have sex until your diarrhea is completely gone. Use barriers (like condoms or dental dams) during sex.
  • DO NOT prepare food for others while you are sick.
  • AVOID swimming until you have fully recovered.

Symptoms can include diarrhea, fever, and cramping. Even after you are feeling better, you can still spread Shigella in your stool (poop) for several weeks.

How People Get Sick

Shigella spreads when a person gets poop from a sick person into their mouth. Even microscopic amounts of poop could make someone sick.

  • Hands – Getting Shigella bacteria on your hands then touching your food or mouth.
  • Food – Eating food that was prepared by someone who is sick (or recently sick) with Shigella.
  • Water – Swallowing water while swimming or drinking water contaminated with poop that has Shigella bacteria.
  • Sex – Contact with germs from poop during sexual contact with someone sick or recently sick with Shigella.

If you think you might have Shigella, talk to your doctor.

Printable Formats

Shigella print materials can be ordered for free via CDC-Info on Demand.