Pathology of the Gastrointestinal Tract

2017 Edition
| Editors: Fátima Carneiro, Paula Chaves, Arzu Ensari

Dysentery, Bacillary

  • Xavier SagaertEmail author
Reference work entry




Dysentery is an infection of the digestive tract, characterized by inflammation of the colon wall, frequent loose stools, cramping abdominal pain, appearance of mucus, blood and pus in the feces.

Bacillary dysentery is a type of dysentery that is caused by bacteria of the genus Shigella, although sometimes Campylobacter, Salmonella, and other related bacteria may cause clinically similar diseases. In the Western world, bacillary dysentery is most commonly transmitted through fecal-oral route, e.g., during care for a sick person or through a variety of household items contaminated with secretions of the patient. It is highly contagious as symptoms may result from ingestion of only 10–100 organisms. As such, Shigella outbreaks are often associated with crowded living conditions and less than optimal hygiene conditions, e.g., military troops deployed in camps, nursing homes, day-care centers, and prions. Shigellacontamination can also occur during sexual...

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References and Further Reading

  1. Edwards, B. H. (1999). Salmonella and Shigella species. Clinics in Laboratory Medicine, 19, 469.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Niyogi, S. K. (2005). Shigellosis. Journal of Microbiology, 43, 133–143.Google Scholar
  3. Pfeiffer, M. L., Dupont, H. L., & Ochoa, T. J. (2012). The patient presenting with acute dysentery–A systematic review. Journal of Infection, 64, 374–386.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Phalipon, A., & Sansonetti, P. J. (2003). Shigellosis: Innate mechanisms of inflammatory destruction of the intestinal epithelium, adaptive immune response, and vaccine development. Critical Reviews in Immunology, 23, 371–401.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Walker, C. L. F., Applegate, J. A., & Black, R. E. (2012). Haemolytic-uraemic syndrome as a sequela of diarrhoeal disease. Journal of Health, Population and Nutrition, 30, 257–261.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of PathologyUniversity Hospitals KU LeuvenLeuvenBelgium