Vibrio parahaemolyticus

Both pathogenic and non-pathogenic forms of Vibrio can be found in fish and shellfish in marine environments of the United States.  The duration of the illness is generally two to three days, with an incubation period ranging from four hours to four days after ingestion.

Only a few cases of Vibrio require hospitalization, because the disease is usually mild.  Effects take route when the organism binds to the walls of the small intestine and excretes toxin. (The secreted toxin is currently unidentified). Symptoms of Vibrio may include: diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, headache, fever, and chills.

Vibrio infections have been reported with the consumption of raw or improperly cooked fish and shellfish.  There is a correlation between Vibrio infection and the warmer months of the year. Improper refrigeration of contaminated seafood will allow proliferation, which increases risk of infection. All consumers of contaminated seafood are at risk of contracting Vibrio; however, few cases require antibiotics.


More Information on Vibrio:


  • Article History
    • Revision Date: 6/22/2010

Food Safety Tip of the Day

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Use a plate, pan or even a plastic bag defrosting raw meats, poultry, or seafood in a refrigerator. Containing the juices that form during the defrosting process helps to prevent potential cross contamination of other items in the refrigerator. These juices may contain illness-causing bacteria that may contaminate ready-to-eat foods unless otherwise contained.

Source: Partnership for Food Safety Education

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