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Shigella Cases On The Rise

Last updated on Wednesday, December 19, 2007

(INDIANAPOLIS) - A substantial increase in the reported cases of shigella has prompted the Marion County Health Department to ask residents to take precautions.

So far this year, Marion County has reported 97 cases of shigella, compared to 57 this same time a year ago.

Dr. Crystal Jones with the health department says shigella is a highly- contagious infection, transmitted primarily person-to-person through the fecal- oral route. It's spread by people who don't properly wash their hands after using the bathroom.

Along with diarrhea, symptoms include cramping, abdominal pain, chills, headache and fever. Anyone who has symptoms should contact their medical provider.

Marion County experienced a shigella outbreak in 2000, when more than 1,300 cases were reported.

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