As of January 10, 2022, a total of 44 people infected with the outbreak strain of Salmonella Uganda have been reported from 25 states. Illnesses started on dates ranging from December 24, 2020, to December 2, 2021.
Sick people range in age from younger than 1 to 84 years, with a median age of 27, and 8 ill people were children under the age of 5. Of 43 people with sex information, 27 (63%) are female. Of 37 people with information available, 15 (41%) have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.
Public health investigators are using the PulseNet system to identify illnesses that may be part of this outbreak. CDC PulseNet manages a national database of DNA fingerprints of bacteria that cause gastrointestinal illnesses. DNA fingerprinting is performed on bacteria using a method called whole genome sequencing (WGS). WGS showed that bacteria from sick people’s samples are closely related genetically. This means that people in this outbreak likely became sick from contact with the same type of animal.
On November 19, 2021, Oregon Health Authority collected samples from a bearded dragon in a sick person’s home for testing. WGS showed that the Salmonella on the animal is closely related to bacteria from sick people. This means that people likely got sick from touching bearded dragons.