Epidemiology and Infection



Salmonella infections in Norway: descriptive epidemiology and a case-control study


G. KAPPERUD a1a2c1, J. LASSEN a1 and V. HASSELTVEDT a1
a1 Department of Bacteriology, National Institute of Public Health, 0403 Oslo, Norway
a2 Section of Food Hygiene, Norwegian College of Veterinary Medicine, 0033 Oslo, Norway

Abstract

The epidemiological progression of human salmonellosis in Norway is parallel to trends noted elsewhere in Europe. During the past two decades, the number of reported cases has increased steadily, with a special sharp rise in the early 1980s due to the emergence of Salmonella enteritidis, followed by a levelling off in recent years. However, in contrast to the situation in most other European countries, about 90% of the cases from whom a travel history is available, have acquired their infection abroad. The incidence of indigenous salmonella infections as well as the prevalence of the microorganism in the domestic food chain, are both comparatively low. In 1993–4, a national case-control study of sporadic indigenous salmonella infections was conducted to identify preventable risk factors and guide preventive efforts. Ninety-four case patients and 226 matched population controls were enrolled. The study failed to demonstrate any statistically significant association between salmonellosis and consumption of domestically produced red meat, poultry or eggs. The only factor which remained independently associated with an increased risk in conditional logistic regression analysis, was consumption of poultry purchased abroad during holiday visits to neighbouring countries. A separate analysis of Salmonella typhimurium infections incriminated food from catering establishments and foreign travel among household members, in addition to imported poultry.

(Accepted July 2 1998)


Correspondence:
c1 Author for correspondence: Department of Bacteriology, National Institute of Public Health, P.O. Box 4404 Torshov, N-0403 Oslo, Norway.


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