What is E Coli Infection?

Your intestine could potentially house Escherichia coli, or E. Coli. This bacteria can occasionally result in urinary tract infections, or UTIs. Bladder bloating, low volume but frequent urine, pelvic pain, and burning sensation during urination are some of the regularly observed symptoms of this infection.


When checking for an E. Coli urine infection, your doctor will typically start with antibiotics. The severity of this may determine the need for further medication after a urinalysis. Read on to find out more about E Coli and its symptoms in the following sections.


Symptoms of E Coli Infection

There are many variants of the E Coli bacteria, some of which are harmless. However, the symptoms of the infection can present themselves in many different forms. Having said that, here are some of the symptoms that are most commonly observed:

  • Abdominal pain and cramps are the primary and most noticeable signs of an E. Coli infection. This can be especially concerning if there is quick onset of these tummy aches and they result in severe, persistent stomach pain or soreness

  • Excessive flatulence can also result from significant gas production in the stomach caused by E. Coli infections

  • Some people may also have other uncomfortable symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and appetite loss

  • Pale skin, extreme exhaustion, and dehydration due to the body losing vital fluids and electrolytes may also occur

  • Fever and elevated body temperature can also be symptoms of certain E. Coli infections

  • While most of such infections occur in the form of food poisoning, the bacteria can also affect your body in other ways such as E Coli UTI or even pneumonia

Causes and Transmission of E Coli

As mentioned before, some strains of E Coli are not harmful and do not cause any adverse reactions to the human body. However, there are others that release harmful toxins and can thereby cause E Coli infection. Therefore, it is important to be aware of how the bacteria can be spread. Here are a few ways this can happen:

  • Eating Contaminated Food:

You can develop an E Coli infection by swallowing food that has been contaminated with harmful strains of the E Coli bacteria. This can happen when the food has not been properly handled during cooking or processing. It can also occur if the people cooking the food have not followed proper hygiene protocols. 

  • Drinking Contaminated Water

Similarly, you can develop an E Coli infection by consuming water that has been contaminated by the bacteria. This can be due to infection of the municipal water supplies or an improper treatment process of drinking water. 

  • Person to Person

The E Coli bacteria may not originate from the human body, but it can spread from an infected person to a healthy person through direct contact. If such a person has not followed proper hygiene, such as washing and sanitising their hands, they can spread the bacteria through handshakes and other forms of contact.

  • Contact with Animals

Since the E Coli bacteria can survive in a variety of life forms, you can catch an infection not only through direct contact with other humans but from animals as well.

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Diagnosis of E Coli Infection

Unless the symptoms are very severe, it might be hard to distinguish E Coli infections from a regular food poisoning episode without consulting a professional physician. The only method of ascertaining whether you have an E Coli infection is to send a stool sample to a diagnostic lab for analysis.

Treatment for Mild E Coli Infection

In most cases, the E Coli infection goes away and resolves on its own. All you may be recommended to do is get plenty of rest and ensure regular consumption of fluids. In other cases, the doctor might prescribe certain antibiotics as part of your E Coli treatment.


In more severe cases, the E Coli infection might lead to symptoms such as bloody diarrhea and damage to the intestines. In such a situation, your doctor might choose not to prescribe antibiotics as they can result in the symptoms worsening. If you have experienced severe dehydration due to the infection, your doctor might recommend hospitalisation and administering IV fluids to replenish lost fluids.

Home Remedies for E Coli Infection

E coli infections are more severe than most common infections and require medical intervention as quickly as possible. However, after you have sought the proper treatment and the medications have been prescribed, you will be required to recover at home. Here are the home recovery methods to follow as you recover from E Coli:

  • Drink water and other fluids:

In order to allow your body to flush out the infection causing viruses, it is important to drink plenty of water and other fluids such as juice and green tea, for instance.

  • Stay away from certain types of foods:

 Your symptoms can get worse by consuming certain types of foods such as dairy products, fatty foods, spicy foods, and those having a high fiber content. 

  • Choose meals carefully:

When you do feel better enough to start eating again, choose foods that have a low-fiber content, such as eggs and rice. Also, make sure that the food is mild or lightly seasoned to ensure that your symptoms do not aggrevate.

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How to Prevent E Coli Infections

Given how easy it is for E Coli infections to spread, simply following a few simple health and hygiene guidelines can go a long way in reducing your chances of contracting the disease. Here are a few of them:

  • Hand Hygiene:

Following good hand hygiene practices before eating or preparing a meal, after handling raw meat, and making contact with an animal including your pets. 

  • Clean Food Items:

Washing your food items, such as fruits, vegetables, and meats, thoroughly before consuming or cooking them. 

  • Storage of Meat:

It is particularly important to store raw meat separately from other food items and utensils in order to avoid any chances of contamination.

  • Regular Washing of Cutlery:

Making sure that all kitchen utensils and cutlery are washed regularly and properly.

  • Choosing the Right Type of Milk:

Drinking only pasteurized milk, and avoiding raw milk entirely, can help prevent chances of contracting E Coli infections.


E. Coli infections and symptoms can manifest in a multitude of ways and have distinct responses in individuals. While there are straightforward treatments available for small E. Coli infections, it is advisable to practice prevention and also have backup plans in case of severe infections or other medical emergencies. 


To that end, consider purchasing a reliable health insurance plan for yourself as well as your loved ones to ensure that you are protected for a wide variety of medical events.

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