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Food Poisoning (cont.)

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What are the causes of food poisoning?

There many causes of food poisoning. Sometimes they are classified by how quickly the symptoms begin after eating potentially contaminated food. Think of this as the incubation time from when food enters the body and symptoms begin. The following are several examples how this time classification can be arranged:

Short incubation or less than 16 to 24 hours

Chemical causes

  • Scombroid poisoning usually is due to poorly cooked or stored fish. The affected person will experience flushing, , shortness of breath, and difficulty swallowing within 1 to 2 hour of eating.
  • Ciguatera poisoning is another fish toxin that occurs after eating fish such as grouper, snapper, and barracuda. Symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea, muscle aches, and neurologic complaints including headache, numbness and tingling, hallucinations, and difficulty with balance (ataxia).
  • Mushroom ingestions can cause initial symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea. Eating Amanita mushrooms can cause liver and kidney failure leading to death.

Bacterium Causes

  • Staphylococcus aureus poisoning is due to a toxin that is pre-formed in food before it is eaten. It causes vomiting within 1 to 6 hours after eating the contaminated food.
  • Bacillus cereus is an infection that occurs after eating poorly cooked or raw rice.
  • Clostridium Perfringens is a spore that infects cooked meat that has been stored in an environment that was too warm. Within 8 to 12 hours, it may cause profuse diarrhea.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/3/2013

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Source: MedicineNet.com
http://www.medicinenet.com/food_poisoning/article.htm

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