oa South African Medical Journal - An outbreak of food poisoning amongst nurses and patients of the Pretoria non-European hospital

Volume 27, Issue 49
  • ISSN : 0256-9574
  • E-ISSN: 2078-5135



1. A massive outbreak of Salmonella typhimurium food poisoning is descriptionbed amongst 175 non-European (African) nurses and 54 non-European patients in the Pretoria General Hospital. 2. The vehicle of spread was a gelatine-and-egg pudding. 3. The organism was cultured from the pudding, and from the faeces of 13 out of 15 patients from whom samples were taken on the day after they had become infected. 4. Two days after the outbreak started 18 specimens of stools from the kitchen staff were cultured. Only one specimen contained S. typhimurium, but this was a false lead, for the person concerned had eaten of the pudding. In this group, however, 2 gave positive agglutination reactions in a titre of more than 1: 50, 8 days after the commencement of the outbreak. Their stools had been negative. 5. Amongst the patients 14 out of 17 gave both Hand o agglutination with the S. typhimurium isolated from the stools, 8 days after the ingestion of the pudding. 6. It is suggested that the infection came from the hen's eggs used in the preparation of the pudding. 7. Two children died as a result of the S. typhimurium infection.

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