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Commun Dis Public Health. 2004 Dec;7(4):349-53.

Airborne Campylobacter infection in a poultry worker: case report and review of the literature.

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  • 1Northern Ireland Public Health Laboratory, Bacteriology Department, Belfast City Hospital, Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7AD.


A man who had recently started work as a packer in a chicken factory developed campylobacteriosis with severe complications. This prompted a qualitative assessment of the occupational infection risk. It is likely that his infection occurred by droplet transmission via the mouth. Serological studies have shown increased risk of infection to poultry workers, particularly in the first weeks of employment. Previous reports have identified the risks of airborne pathogen transmission, and these papers are reviewed here. Epidemiological evidence from the plant indicated that workers were three times more likely than the general population to suffer campylobacteriosis, and occupational health reporting confirms the risk to poultry workers. Employers should offer face masks to their workers for protection from airborne infection.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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