Shigellosis

Statutory notification

Public health management

Important information

  • Infectious agent: Shigella (S. sonnei, S. flexneri, S. boydii and S. dysenteriae) bacteria.
  • Transmission: Faecal-oral, most commonly person-to-person.
  • Incubation period: 12 to 96 hours (usually 1 to 3 days).
  • Infectious period: Most infectious while symptomatic and low risk post recovery, although Shigella may persist in the faeces (usually no longer than 4 weeks after symptoms cease). Use contact transmission- based precautions for hospitalised and institutionalised patients.
  • Case exclusion: Until asymptomatic, including normal stools, for 24 hours. If patient works in health-care, aged-care, child-care or is a food handler or attends child-care exclude until asymptomatic, including normal stools, for 48 hours. If patient has S. dysenteriae infection and works in health-care, aged-care, child-care or is a food handler or attends child-care, two consecutive negative faecal specimens collected at least 24 hours apart are required for clearance. See OD 0645/16 Guidelines for exclusion of people with enteric infections and their contacts from work, school and child-care settings (external site).
  • Contact exclusion: Do not exclude.
  • Treatment: Oral rehydration and antibiotic treatment as recommended by the doctor.
  • Immunisation: None available.
  • Case follow-up: Generally only clusters or outbreaks investigated, by the Communicable Disease Control Directorate with assistance from public health units (Healthy WA).

Guidelines

Notifiable disease data and reports

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Public Health