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Shigellosis is an infection of the intestines caused by shigella bacteria.



  • IV fluids: You may need IV (intravenous) fluids if you are dehydrated.
  • Antibiotics: You may be given antibiotics if you have severe shigellosis infection. These will kill the bacteria.
  • Take your medicine as directed. Call your healthcare provider if you think your medicine is not helping or if you have side effects. Tell him if you are allergic to any medicine. Keep a list of the medicines, vitamins, and herbs you take. Include the amounts, and when and why you take them. Bring the list or the pill bottles to follow-up visits. Carry your medicine list with you in case of an emergency.

Manage your symptoms:

  • Do not take medicines to stop your diarrhea: This may make the infection last longer.
  • Drink liquids as directed: Ask your healthcare provider how much liquid to drink each day and which liquids are best for you. This may help prevent dehydration.

Prevent the spread of shigella bacteria:

  • Wash your hands often: Wash your hands in warm, soapy water for 20 seconds. Wash your hands before you prepare or eat food. Wash after you use the bathroom, sneeze, or change a child's diaper. Place soiled diapers from an infected child in a trash can with a tight lid. Use a disinfectant or diluted bleach to clean the diaper changing area. Then wash your hands and the child's hands. Help young children and older adults with hand washing after they use the bathroom.
  • Limit contact with others: Do not swim in public pools or go to work or school until you have had no diarrhea for 1 day.
  • Cook food all the way through: Cook eggs until the yolks are firm. Use a meat thermometer to make sure meat is heated to a temperature that will kill bacteria. Do not eat raw or undercooked chicken and turkey, seafood, or meat. Do not prepare food for others until you have had no diarrhea for at least 2 days.
  • Store food properly: Refrigerate or freeze fruits and vegetables, cooked foods, and leftovers.
  • Drink safe water: Do not drink water from ponds or lakes, or from swimming pools that do not contain chlorine.

Follow up with your healthcare provider as directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

Contact your healthcare provider if:

  • You have a fever.
  • You have severe abdominal pain.
  • Your diarrhea gets worse.
  • You are dizzy or weak.
  • You have pain in your joints.
  • You have questions or concerns about your condition or care.

Return to the emergency department if:

  • Your child has a seizure.
  • Your abdomen is hard and swollen, and you are constipated.
  • You have a high fever or severe chills.
  • You have severe nausea and are vomiting.
  • Your mouth is dry, your lips are cracked, and you are thirsty.
  • You are urinating less or not at all.
  • Your heartbeat or breathing is faster than usual.

© 2016 Truven Health Analytics Inc. Information is for End User's use only and may not be sold, redistributed or otherwise used for commercial purposes. All illustrations and images included in CareNotes® are the copyrighted property of A.D.A.M., Inc. or Truven Health Analytics.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.