Slideshows Images Quizzes
font size

Shigella Infection (cont.)

People at Risk

  • Young children are the most likely to get shigellosis, but people from all age groups are affected. Many outbreaks are related to childcare settings and schools, and illness commonly spreads from young children to their family members and others in their communities because it is so contagious.
  • Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) are more likely to acquire shigellosis than the general adult population. Shigella passes from stools [poop] or soiled fingers of one person to the mouth of another person, which can happen during sexual activity. Many shigellosis outbreaks among MSM have been reported in the United States, Canada, Tokyo, and Europe since 1999.
  • HIV-infected persons can have more severe and prolonged shigellosis, including having the infection spread into the blood, which can be life-threatening.
  • Large outbreaks of Shigella have occurred in traditionally observant Jewish communities. Documented outbreaks in traditionally observant Jewish communities often begin in childcare settings and spread within and between households during social gatherings.
  • Travelers to developing countries may be more likely to get shigellosis, and to become infected with strains of Shigella that are resistant to important antibiotics. Travelers may be exposed through contaminated food, water (both drinking and recreational water), or surfaces. Travelers can protect themselves by strictly following food and water precautions, and washing hands with soap frequently.


In 2013, the average annual incidence of shigellosis in the United States was 4.82 cases per 100,000 individuals.


United States. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Shigella -- Shigellosis." <>. Last updated: 8/3/2016

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 10/19/2016


Women's Health

Find out what women really need.

Shigella Infection Related Articles
Use Pill Finder Find it Now See Interactions

Pill Identifier on RxList

  • quick, easy,
    pill identification

Find a Local Pharmacy

  • including 24 hour, pharmacies

Interaction Checker

  • Check potential drug interactions
Search the Medical Dictionary for Health Definitions & Medical Abbreviations

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors