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13.1.5 I don't feel so good. What do I have/had/will have?


This article is from the Food Preserving FAQ, by Eric Decker ericnospam@getcomputing.com with numerous contributions by others.

13.1.5 I don't feel so good. What do I have/had/will have?

This is a generalized list of food poisoning symptoms pulled from the Bad
Bug Book on the FDA site: http://vm.cfsan.fda.gov/~mov/app2.html.

[If you are actually in the throes of food poisoning, do not use this as a
substitute for a doctor's diagnosis and care. I merely list this as a
subject useful to food preserver--LEB.

Onset time           Predominant                      organism
to symptoms            symptoms                       or toxin
Upper gastrointestinal tract symptoms (nausea, vomiting) occur first or
Less than 1 h    Nausea, vomiting, unusual        Metallic salts
                 taste burning of mouth.
1-2 h            Nausea, vomiting, cyanosis,      Nitrites
                 headache, dizziness, dyspnea,
                 trembling, weakness, loss of
1-6 h, mean      Nausea, vomiting, retching,      Staphylococcus
  2-4 h          diarrhea, abdominal pain,        and its enterotoxins
8-16 h           Vomiting, abdominal cramps,      Bacillus cereus
 (2-4 h emesis   diarrhea, nausea.
6-24 h           Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea,      Amanita species
                 thirst, dilation of pupils,      mushrooms
                 collapse, coma.

Sore throat and respiratory symptoms occur:

12-72 h          Sore throat, fever, nausea,      Streptococcus
                 vomiting, rhinorrhea, sometimes
                 a rash.
2-5 days         Inflamed throat and nose,        Corynebacterium
                 spreading grayish exudate,       diphtheriae
                 fever, chills, sore throat,
                 malaise, difficulty in swallowing,
                 edema of cervical lymph node.

Lower gastrointestinal tract symptoms (abdominal cramps, diarrhea) occur
first or predominate:

2-36 h, mean     Abdominal cramps, diarrhea,      Clostridium perfringens,
  6-12 h         putrefactive diarrhea            Bacillus cereus,
                 associated with C. perfringens,  Streptococcus faecalis,
                 sometimes nausea and vomiting.   S. faecium
12-74 h, mean    Abdominal cramps, diarrhea,      Salmonella species
  18-36 h        vomiting, fever, chills,         (including S.  arizonae),
                 malaise, nausea, headache,       Shigella, enteropatho-
                 possible.  Sometimes bloody      genic Escherichia coli,
                 or mucoid diarrhea, cutaneous    other Enterobacteriacae,
                 lesions associated with V.       Vibrio parahaemolyticus,
                 vulnificus.  Yersinia            Yersinia enterocoliticia,
                 enterocoliticia mimics           Pseudomonas aeruginosa
                 flu and acute appendicitis.      (?),Aeromonas hydrophila,
                                                  Plesiomonas shigelloides,
                                                  Campylobacter jejuni,
                                                  Vibriocholerae (Ol and
                                                  non-Ol) V.vulnificus, V.
3-5 days         Diarrhea, fever, vomiting        Enteric viruses
                 abdominal pain, respiratory
1-6 weeks        Mucoid diarrhea (fatty stools)   Giardia lamblia
                 abdominal pain, weight loss.
1 to several     Abdominal pain, diarrhea,        Entamoeba histolytica weeks,
                 constipation, headache, drowsiness, ulcers, variable --
                 often asymptomatic.
3-6 months       Nervousness, insomnia, hunger    Taenia saginata,
                 pains, anorexia, weight loss,    T. solium
                 abdominal pain, sometimes

Neurological symptoms (visual disturbances, vertigo, tingling,

Less than l h    *** SEE GASTROINTESTINAL AND/OR  Shellfish toxin
                 NEUROLOGIC SYMPTOMS (Shellfish Toxins)
                 (this Appendix)
                 Gastroenteritis, nervousness,    Organic phosphate
                 blurred vision, chest pain,
                 cyanosis, twitching, convulsions.
                 Excessive salivation, perspir-   Muscaria-type
                 ation, gastroenteritis,          mushrooms
                 irregular pulse, pupils
                 constricted, asthmatic breathing.
                 Tingling and numbness,           Tetradon (tetrodotoxin)
                 dizziness, pallor, gastro-       toxins
                 hemmorrhage, and desquamation
                 of skin, fixed eyes, loss of
                 reflexes, twitching, paralysis.
1-6 h            Tingling and numbness, gastro-   Ciguatera toxin
                 enteritis, dizziness, dry mouth,
                 muscular aches, dilated pupils,
                 blurred vision, paralysis.
                 Nausea, vomiting, tingling,      Chlorinated hydrocarbons
                 dizziness, weakness, anorexia,
                 weight loss, confusion.
2 h to 6 days,   Vertigo, double or blurred       Clostridium botulinum
  usually        vision, loss of reflex to        and its neurotoxins
  12-36 h        light, difficulty in swallowing.
                 speaking, and breathing, dry
                 mouth, weakness, respiratory
More than 72 h   Numbness, weakness of legs,      Organic mercury
                 spastic paralysis, impairment
                 of vision, blindness, coma.
                 Gastroenteritis, leg pain,       Triorthocresyl
                 ungainly high-stepping gait,     phosphate
                 foot and wrist drop.

Allergic symptoms (facial flushing, itching) occur:

Less than 1 h    Headache, dizziness, nausea,     Histamine
                 vomiting, peppery taste, burning
                 of throat, facial swelling and
                 flushing, stomach pain, itching
                 of skin.
                 Numbness around mouth, tingling  Monosodium glutamate
                 sensation, flushing, dizziness,
                 headache, nausea.
                 Flushing, sensation of warmth,   Nicotinic acid
                 itching, abdominal pain, puffing
                 of face and knees.

Generalized infection symptoms (fever, chills, malaise, prostration, aches,
swollen lymph nodes) occur:

4-28 days, mean  Gastroenteritis, fever, edema    Trichinella spiralis
  9 days         about eyes, perspiration,
                 muscular pain, chills,
                 prostration, labored breathing.
7-28 days, mean  Malaise, headache, fever, cough, Salmonella typhi
  14 days        nausea, vomiting, constipation,
                 abdominal pain, chills, rose
                 spots, bloody stools.
10-13 days       Fever, headache, myalgia, rash.  Toxoplasma gondii
0-50 days,      Fever, malaise, lassitude,       Etiological agent not
  mean 25-30     anorexia, nausea, abdominal      yet isolated -- probably
  days           pain, jaundice.                  viral
Varying periods  Fever, chills, head- or joint    Bacillus anthracis,
  (depends on    ache, prostration, malaise,      Brucella melitensis, B.
  specific       swollen lymph nodes, and other   abortus, B. suis, Coxi-
  illness)       specific symptoms of disease     ella burnetii, Franci-
                 in question.                     sella tularensis,
                                                  Listeria monocytogenes,
                                                  Mycobacterium tubercu-
                                                  losis, Mycobacterium
                                                  species, Pasteurella
                                                  multocida, Strepto-
                                                  bacillus moniliformis,
                                                  Campylobacter jejuni,
                                                  Leptospira species.

Gastrointestinal and/or Neurologic Symptoms - (Shellfish Toxins):

 0.5 to 2 h       Tingling, burning, numbness,     Paralytic Shellfish
                 drowsiness, incoherent speech,   Poisoning (PSP)
                 respiratory paralysis.           (saxitoxins)
 2 - 5 min to     Reversal of hot and cold         Neurotoxic Shellfish
  3 - 4 h        sensation, tingling; numbness    Poisoning (NSP)
                 of lips, tongue & throat; muscle (brevetoxins)
                 aches, dizziness, diarrhea,
 30 min to        Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea,      Diarrheic Shellfish
  2 - 3 h        abdominal pain, chills, fever    Poisoning (DSP)
                                                  (dinophysis toxin,
                                                  okadaic acid, pecteno-
                                                  toxin, yessotoxin)
 24 h (gastroin-  Vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal    Amnesic Shellfish
  testinal) to   pain, confusion, memory loss,    Poisoning (ASP)
  48 h           disorientation, seizure, coma    (domoic acid)

Text last edited: 21 Jan 92
Hypertext last edited: 26 Jul 94mow@vm.cfsan.fda.gov


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