Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which Doctor should I consult for E. coli infection?

Your family physician should be consulted if you are having suspected E. coli infection.

2. How do you get rid of E. coli infection?

Fortunately, the infection usually goes away on its own. For some types of E. coliassociated with severe cases or traveler’s diarrhea, antibiotics can help in controlling the symptoms.

3. How long does it take to recover from an E.coli infection?

Symptoms usually last 5 to 10 days.

4. Is E. coli a sexually transmitted infection?

Yes.

5. Can you die from an E. coli infection?

Children under 5 years and the elderly can become very sick from E. coli O157:H7 infection which damages the red blood cells and kidneys and can result in death.

6. What is the best antibiotic to treat E. coli?

Antibiotics such as ciprofloxacin (Cipro) and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim) are mostly used. However, some strains of E. coli, called extended-spectrum beta-lactamase (ESBL) E. coli, are resistant to most antibiotic treatments.

7. Can E. coli be cured?

No. It can be controlled with rest and adequate fluids to help prevent dehydration. Sometimes antibiotics may be prescribed if infection is severe.

8. What is needed to grow E.coli?

E. coli grows best at 37 degrees temperature, with or without oxygen and in minimal media consisting of glucose.

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