As I said last week, shortly after I resolved the 1996 Odwalla E. coli O157:H7 outbreak on behalf of five kids that suffered Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS), and long before Google became synonymous with searching on the Internet, we had compiled more information about that nasty bug and a few others, and their frightening and potentially deadly impact, than anyone outside a few major teaching hospitals.

After I started Marler Clark in 1998 along with Bruce Clark, Denis Stearns and Andy Weisbecker, E. coli O157:H7 cases, along with Salmonella cases, both arrived at our offices at a far too frequent rate.

For those who do not recall Prodigy or Netscape, in 1998 few could envision that the Internet would be more than a place to park what in essence were online Word documents.  So, in 2000 we placed everything we knew about Salmonella on and two of the infection’s complications – Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), and Reactive Arthritis, on the web.

The idea was when someone called you would direct them to the site to read for themselves about the dangers of Salmonella, IBS and RA.  I think few at the time – certainly not me – thought that people would search for these things for themselves by using “search terms.”

Over the years the sites have gone through substantive changes – both in content quality and look.  We have had the opportunity and honor to work with the best infectious disease experts in the world, and the patients they cared for.  In the last month both sites have undergone edited content and an updated look – here are the highlights:


Salmonella is a bacterium that causes one of the most common enteric (intestinal) infections in the United States – salmonellosis.  It has long been said that, in 1885, pioneering American veterinary scientist, Daniel E. Salmon, discovered the first strain of Salmonella.   Actually, Theobald Smith, research-assistant to Dr. Salmon, discovered the first strain of SalmonellaSalmonella cholerae suis.  But, being the person in charge, Dr. Salmon received credit for the discovery.  In any case, today the number of known strains of the bacteria totals over two thousand.

The term Salmonella refers to a group or family of bacteria that variously cause illness in humans. Salmonella serotype typhimurium and Salmonella serotype Enteritidis are the most common in the United States.  Salmonella javiana is the fifth most common serotype in the United States and accounted for 3.4% of Salmonella isolates reported to the CDC during 2002.

Reactive Arthritis – Reiter’s Syndrome

Reactive Arthritis refers to a group of arthritic diseases that includes a subset formally known as “Reiter’s Syndrome.”  The old term Reiter’s syndrome has fallen into disfavor.  In recent medical literature Reiter’s Syndrome is simply referred to as Reactive Arthritis which may or may not be accompanied by extraintestinal manifestations.

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is one disorder in a spectrum of common functional gastrointestinal disorders. Symptoms of IBS can include constipation, diarrhea, alternating diarrhea and constipation, abdominal pain, urgency, bloating, straining at stools, and a sense of incomplete evacuation.

Readers, I would love your feedback.  Also, feel free to use the information on all our “about” sites – a link back would be nice.