55 sickened with antibiotic-resistant bacteria linked to pet store puppies in ongoing outbreak

Fifty-five people have contracted drug-resistant Campylobacter infections in a multistate outbreak linked to pet store puppies, according to a CDC update posted Tuesday.

The new total marks a 16-case increase since the CDC's Sept. 11 update. Thirteen individuals have required hospitalization. The outbreak, which began Sept. 15, 2016, stems from infected puppies at Petland pet stores across multiple states.

The twelve states with confirmed infections are Florida (13), Kansas (7), Maryland (1), Missouri (2), New Hampshire (1), New York (1), Ohio (22), Pennsylvania (2), Tennessee (2), Utah (1), Wisconsin (2) and Wyoming (1).

Genome sequencing of Campylobacter samples extracted from seven patients and six sick puppies suggested all 13 isolates were resistant to azithromycin, ciprofloxacin, clindamycin, erythromycin, nalidixic acid and telithromycin. Additionally, nine isolates carried genes indicative of resistance to gentamicin, and 12 isolates carried genes that suggested resistance to tetracycline.

Campylobacteriosis is an infectious disease caused by Campylobacter bacteria. The bacteria can be contracted through contact with contaminated feces and is not usually spread via person-to-person contact. Most sickened individuals experience diarrhea, cramping, abdominal pain and fever two days to five days after bacterial exposure. The diarrhea may be bloody. The illness typically lasts about a week.

The investigation into the outbreak is ongoing.

To learn more about the outbreak and Campylobacter, click here.

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