Occupational Safety and Health Administration OSHA

Alert: Due to routine maintenance on the OSHA website, some pages may be temporarily unavailable.
To report an emergency, file a complaint with OSHA or ask a safety and health question, call 800-321-6742 (OSHA)


botulism_banner.jpg - Photo Credit: CDC/ Courtesy of Larry Stauffer, Oregon State Public Health Laboratory - ID#1930
Botulism Menu

Evaluating Exposure

Person to person transmission of botulism does not occur. The symptoms are not caused by the organism itself, but by the toxin that the bacterium releases which usually appear within 12 to 36 hours but can range from four hours to eight days after exposure. Incidence of botulism is low, but the mortality rate is high if not treated immediately. The disease can be fatal in 5 to 10 percent of cases. The following references provide useful information about the management of exposures to botulinum toxin.

Evaluation and Investigation

Prompt and thorough laboratory evaluation of cases and suspected foods is essential. Cases of foodborne disease involving botulism, are identified by a distinctive clinical syndrome. For information about conducting evaluations of foodborne disease and reporting foodborne disease epidemics to local health authorities, see the following reference:

Back to Top

Thank You for Visiting Our Website

You are exiting the Department of Labor's Web server.

The Department of Labor does not endorse, takes no responsibility for, and exercises no control over the linked organization or its views, or contents, nor does it vouch for the accuracy or accessibility of the information contained on the destination server. The Department of Labor also cannot authorize the use of copyrighted materials contained in linked Web sites. Users must request such authorization from the sponsor of the linked Web site. Thank you for visiting our site. Please click the button below to continue.