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Foodborne Pathogens and Disease





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The objective of this study was to evaluate the human health impact of using fluoroquinolones to treat bovine respiratory disease (BRD) in dairy heifers less than 20 months of age. Specifically, this study quantified the probability of persistent symptoms in humans treated with a fluoroquinolone, for a fluoroquinolone-resistant Campylobacter, Salmonella, or multidrug-resistant (MDR) Salmonella infection acquired following the consumption of ground beef. To comply with a Food and Drug Administration requirement for approval of enrofloxacin use in dairy heifers, a binomial event tree was constructed following Food and Drug Administration guidance 152. Release was estimated from the slaughter of dairy cattle carrying fluoroquinolone-resistant bacteria attributed to the proposed use in dairy heifers. For exposure, human foodborne exposure to Campylobacter, Salmonella, and MDR Salmonella after consumption of ground beef was estimated. The consequence assessment included illness, fluoroquinolone treatment, and persistent symptoms in patients treated with a fluoroquinolone. Using best available data to estimate the parameters and probabilities of each event, stochastic simulation was used to represent uncertainty and variability in many of the parameters. A scenario analysis was performed to evaluate the uncertainty of the following parameters: (1) probability of resistance development in treated animals, (2) portion of illnesses attributable to ground beef, and (3) probability of persistent symptoms in patients 18 years of age and over treated with a fluoroquinolone. The population at risk was restricted to people 18 years of age and over, as fluoroquinolones are not labeled for treatment of gastroenteritis in children. The mean annual increased risk of cases in the U.S. population (18 years of age and over) where compromised fluoroquinolone treatment resulted in persistent symptoms was estimated to be 1 in 61 billion (one case every 293 years) for Salmonella, 1 in 33 billion (one case every 158 years) for MDR Salmonella, and 1 in 2.8 billion (one case every 13 years) for Campylobacter.


This is a copy of an article published in the Foodborne Pathogens and Disease © 2010 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.; Foodborne Pathogens and Disease is available online at:

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Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.



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