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EHEC outbreak in Europe 歐洲出血性大腸桿菌爆發

(added on 2011/06/27)

©2011 SpatioEpi.com
Data source: Federal Statistical Office of Germany, WHO & Robert Koch Institute
Map created by CUHK SpatioEpi Group

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An enterohaemorrhagic Escherichia coli (EHEC) outbreak occurred in Germany in May and June 2011. Thirteen other European countries have together reported a few dozen cases. Almost all infected persons outside Germany had travelled to or lived in Germany during the incubation period.

The map shows the 2011 EHEC outbreak situation, against the background of the number of European visitors in Germany in 2009. Between onset of the outbreak through 15 June, there were 786 haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS) cases and 2517 EHEC infection cases in Germany. Cumulative incidence of HUS and EHEC infection was higher in federal states in northern Germany such as Hamburg, Schleswig-Holstein, Bremen and Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (inset). The bar charts in the main map show the distribution of cases in countries adjacent to Germany including Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden. Of these, many were also the top sources of visitors to Germany, as depicted by graduated colours in the map. The preference for south-western federal states of Germany by foreign visitors is also shown. The discrepancy between regions heavily affected by the EHEC within Germany and major destinations for visitors may explain the relatively localized pattern in the outbreak.

Data for the map were obtained from Federal Statistical Office of Germany, World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe and Robert Koch Institute.

2011年5月至6月期間,德國發生腸道出血性大腸桿菌(EHEC)感染爆發,鄰近13個歐洲國家亦共錄得數十宗感染個案,幾乎所有德國境外的感染者都曾於潛伏期內到訪或居於德國。

地圖顯示今次爆發情況及2009年到訪德國的旅客數目。自5月EHEC爆發至6月15日為止,德國共有786宗溶血尿毒症及2517宗腸道出血性大腸桿菌感染個案。小圖顯示北部的聯邦州如漢堡、石勒蘇益格-荷爾斯泰因州、不萊梅及梅克倫堡-前波莫瑞州的疫情最為嚴重,累積發病率最高。

主圖的棒型圖表標示德國相鄰國家如荷蘭、瑞士、丹麥及瑞典等出現較多相關感染個案,而當中大部分均是到訪德國的旅客的主要來源地。依主圖顏色所示,這些外國旅客較喜歡以德國西南面的聯邦州為旅遊的目的地。德國主要疫區與外國旅客偏好的聯邦州的差異可解釋為何是次爆發大體上只局限於德國本土。

地圖資料源自德國聯邦統計局、世界衛生組織歐洲區域辦事處及羅伯特‧科赫研究所。

Related Article

Escherichia coli 大腸桿菌

Escherichia coli (E. coli) is a bacterium commonly found in the guts of humans and other warm-blooded animals. Most strains of E. coli are harmless, but some can cause severe food-borne disease by producing toxins called shiga-toxin. In response to the German outbreak and the seriousness of the disease, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infection has been included as one of the statutory notifiable diseases in Hong Kong since June 2011.

Symptoms of infection include abdominal cramps and diarrhoea, which may be bloody. Fever and vomiting may also occur.

E. coli infection is usually transmitted through ingestion of contaminated water or food. Therefore, hand washing, especially after using bathroom or changing diapers and before preparing food or eating, is an effective preventive measure. Cooking meat thoroughly and avoiding raw milk and unpasteurized dairy products can also prevent human from infection.

大腸桿菌是一種常見於人類及其他恆溫動物腸道中的細菌,大多數菌株對人體無害,不過部分產生強烈毒素(稱『志賀毒素』),並可引致嚴重的食源性疾病。鑑於德國爆發病情嚴重的大腸桿菌感染,香港於2011年6月已將產志賀毒素大腸桿菌感染列為法定須呈報傳染病。

大腸桿菌感染症狀包括腹絞痛及腹瀉,甚至便中帶血。患者也可能出現發燒及嘔吐症狀。

大腸桿菌感染通常由進食受污染的水或食物而傳播。要預防感染,如廁或更換尿布後應徹底洗手,進食及處理食物前亦應洗淨雙手。另外,徹底煮熟肉類及避免進食未經消毒處理的牛奶及奶類製品均可預防感染。


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