Brucellosis is an infection you can catch from unpasteurised milk and cheese. It's extremely rare in the UK.
It's mainly caught by:
You can also catch it from eating raw or undercooked meat, or from contact with bodily fluids of farm animals such as cows, goats, sheep and pigs. But this is rare.
It's very rare to catch brucellosis from other people.
Symptoms may appear suddenly over 1 to 2 days or gradually over several weeks.
Symptoms of brucellosis are like the flu:
Tell your GP if you have recently travelled overseas.
Brucellosis is usually diagnosed using a blood test.
The infection is treated with a course of antibiotics for at least 6 weeks. It's important to finish your course even if you start to feel better.
You should make a full recovery, and the infection is unlikely to return.
There's no human vaccine against brucellosis, but there are things you can do to reduce your chances of getting it.
Brucellosis is a notifiable animal disease. If you suspect you or someone you know has it, you must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301.