About Campylobacter

Campylobacter infection, or campylobacteriosis, is a bacterial infection. It is one of the most common causes of diarrheal illness in the United States, and cases are more common in the summer.

How is it transmitted?

Campylobacter infection is normally spread through undercooked meat or from contamination of other foods and surfaces (e.g. a cutting board). This usually happens by:

  • Eating food or drinking liquids that are contaminated
  • Touching contaminated surfaces or objects and then touching your fingers to your mouth

Signs and symptoms

The most common symptoms are diarrhea (often bloody), fever, and abdominal cramps. Vomiting and nausea are sometimes associated with the diarrhea. Symptoms usually start within two-five days after exposure and can last up to a week.


Most people will recover from Campylobacter infection without treatment. You should drink plenty of liquids to replace fluid lost from vomiting and diarrhea; this will help prevent dehydration.


  • Hand washing, especially after using the bathroom and before handling food.
  • Clean and disinfect contaminated areas.

If you think you have a Campylobacter infection, you should contact Student Health Service (215-746-3535) if symptoms persist or if you have any questions about your symptoms or treatment.