Disease Name

Staphylococcus

Vector Information

Staph bacteria can be found on the skin of approximately 25% to 30% of the human population. Most serotypes of the bacteria are harmless to people, although some infections can be very dangerous to human health. Preventing staph infections should start with keeping a clean kitchen, bathroom, and house to prevent cockroaches and flies from contaminating food and surfaces. Additionally, individuals should practice good hand washing methods. 

This bacteria can cause mild skin infections such as acne or boils or it can cause much more severe infections such as blood, lung, or heart infections. Staph infections can be deadly if left untreated. Diagnosis must be made by a healthcare practitioner. Cockroach transmitted staph infections typically result from an infected cockroach spreading the bacteria onto food or in a beverage that is ingested by a person. The bacteria itself is not harmful at this point, but the bacteria has the ability to produce toxins which, in people, can cause gastrointestinal illness. This type of illness is commonly referred to as Staphylococcus food poisoning. Food poisoning symptoms from this bacteria are typically fast and develop within 30 minutes to 6 hours of infection. Symptoms include vomiting, nausea, stomach cramps, and diarrhea. The illness typically lasts for 24 hours. Diagnosis is made by a healthcare practitioner who will identify the toxins in stool, vomit, or on the food. Generally, testing is only done when several people have been infected. Treatment consists primarily of ensuring the patient receives plenty of fluids to stay hydrated. Depending on the severity, medications may be given to help control vomiting and nausea. The disease is not transmittable from person to person.