*Rate per 100,000 population based on the U.S. Census Bureau’s population data as of July 1, 2003
Listeriosis is caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. The disease can be transmitted through soil and water and has been found in a variety of raw foods such as uncooked meats, vegetables, and dairy products. Animals can carry the bacterium without appearing ill. This rare infection affects mostly pregnant women, newborns, and children and adults with weakened immune systems. Symptoms of listeriosis include nausea, diarrhea, fever, and muscle aches. If the infection spreads to the nervous system, headache, stiff neck, confusion and/or convulsions may occur.
In 2003, 10 cases of listeriosis were reported in Indiana, indicating a rate of less than 1 case per 100,000 population (Table 1). Figure 1 shows reported listeriosis cases by year for 1999-2003. Incidence of disease was greatest during the summer and fall months (Figure 2). As shown in Figure 3, age-specific rates were greatest for older adults 70+ years of age. Nine counties reported having at least one listeriosis case in 2003; however, no county had five or more reported cases. There were no outbreaks of listeriosis reported in Indiana in 2003.
You can learn more about listeriosis by visiting the following Web site: