FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – Hey kids – wash your hands.

Broward’s Health Department is urging parents, schools and day care centers to take precautionary measures after they noted an increase in the number of Shigellosis cases recently.

The Shigella bacteria can infect the digestive tract and cause a wide range of symptoms from cramping and nausea to vomiting and diarrhea (which may be bloody or watery). It’s highly contagious and spreads through person to person contact.

Symptoms may last from 48 to 72 hours. School aged children and children in daycare should be taken out of school until symptoms have ceased and laboratory cultures test negative.

Parents of children with symptoms of Shigellosis should contact their doctor for a diagnosis.

Sometimes Shigellosis goes away on its own; in other cases antibiotics can shorten the course of the illness.

Careful attention to hand washing is the single most important measure to stop the spread of the Shigella bacteria.


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