Escherichia coli

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Animals and humans

Fecal-oral route, and most illness has been associated with eating undercooked, contaminated ground beef, swimming in or drinking contaminated water, and eating contaminated vegetables; but direct person-to-person contact can also spread infection[1]

Case fatality ratios
Case Fatality Ratio Pathway/conditions Population References
8% Neonatal Meningitis Not Reported [2]
3-5% Developed hemolytic uremic syndrome Not Reported [1]
<1% Not Reported Overall [1]

The incubation time for E. coli O157:H7 can be from 2 to 8 days, but it usually ranges from 3 to 4 days[1]

The incidence of E. coli O157:H7 and non-O157 infection per 100,000 population in 2008 is 1.12 and 0.45.[3]

Duration of infectiousness and disease


Severe stomach cramps, diarrhea, and vomiting are common symptoms of E. coli O157:H7 infections. Fever can occur but is usually less than 38.5˚C. Symptoms generally subside within 5-7 days, although more extreme cases do exist. [4]

Excretion Rates (see Exposure)


Gram-negative, rod-shaped bacterium that is commonly found in the lower intestine of warm-blooded organisms.[5]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Arizona Department of Health Services
  2. Medscape Page
  3. CDC MMWR Apr 10, 2009
  4. CDC Page
  5. Wikipedia Page