Introduction Typhoid or enteric fever is an ancient disease, which has afflicted mankind since human populations grew large enough to contaminate their water and food supplies. It is caused by Salmonella enterica serovar typhi (previously known as salmonella typhi), a pathogen specific only to humans, as well as by certain non-typhoid salmonella (NTS), particularly Paratyphoid strains A, B, C. These waterborne gram negative aerobes are associated with poor sanitation and fecal contamination of water and food supplies. The syndrome needs to be distinguished from that caused by many other organisms. Today there are as many as 16-30 million cases per year, almost exclusively in the developing world, with a mortality rate of 10%. Recent developments in the mapping of the Salmonella genome have provided insights into its pathogenicity and how antibiotic resistance and human immunity develop. Typhoid fever is important surgically because abdominal complications such as intestinal perforation, bleeding, cholecystitis and pancreatitis represent the most serious complications of the illness. Typhoid perforation of the ileum is one of the most common causes of bowel perforation in the developing world. (1) Excellent reviews are available for both adult (2-6) as well as pediatric disease. (7) This Review will focus on recent developments in our understanding of this disease.