March 28, 2017

Pritzker Hageman Files First AZ I.M. Healthy E. coli HUS Lawsuit

The law firm of Pritzker Hageman has filed the first Arizona lawsuit in the I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter E. coli O157:H7 - hemolytic uremic syndrome outbreak on behalf of a child. The lawsuit was filed on March 23, 2017 (Case : 1:17-cv-02233) in the United District Court Northern District of Illinois. The client in this case, minor child M.R., contracted a nearly-fatal E. coli O157:H7 infection after eating contaminated soy nut butter manufactured and sold by The SoyNut Butter Company. That infection developed into the complication hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which destroys the kidneys and can cause serious injury. The lawsuit alleges that the child, who attends a day care facility in Flagstaff, Arizona, consumed some of the SoyNut Butter in early January. On or about January … [Read more...]

I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak Grows

As expected, the E. coli O157:H7 outbreak linked to the SoyNut Butter Company's I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter products has grown. The CDC has just released an update on their investigation into this outbreak. Now, 23 people in 9 states are ill with the outbreak strain of E. coli. That's an increase of seven patients since the initial outbreak report on March 13, 2017. Ten of those sickened have been hospitalized. And seven people have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure. No deaths have been reported. Twenty, or 87%, of the ill persons in this outbreak are under the age of 18. No new states are included in the update. The patient case count by state is: Arizona (4), California (5), Maryland (1), Missouri (1), New Jersey (1), Oregon (6), Virginia (2), … [Read more...]

Two of Six Sick at OR Preschool Match I.M. Healthy E. coli

Two of the six people sickened at Montessori of Alameda preschool in Portland, Oregon have infections from E. coli O157:H7 that match the outbreak strain that has sickened at least 16 people in the national I.M. Healthy SoyNut outbreak.  Four of the six are ill with E. coli O157:H7. Two other people have shiga-toxin producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections, which can cause serious illness and kidney failure. Shiga toxins are made by this bacteria. They bind to the intestinal wall and invade the bloodstream, killing red blood cells. Further test results are pending. The health department has been investigating a diarrheal illness at the school since March 7, 2017. Dr. Jennifer Vines, Multnomah County Deputy Health Officer said in a statement "We are working closely with … [Read more...]

E. coli O157 Outbreak at OR Montessori of Alameda Preschool

An E. coli O157 outbreak has sickened six people associated with the Montessori of Alameda preschool in Portland, Oregon. All of the patients have laboratory-confirmed Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli (STEC) infections. One patient is an adult and five are preschoolers. One child has been hospitalized in this outbreak and as of March 10, 2017 was still in the hospital. All of the confirmed cases have occurred in one classroom at a Portland preschool. Samples from three of the patients have been typed so far and have been identified as E. coli O157. The Health Department is investigating the source of this pathogenic bacteria, including whether there is a link to this outbreak and the national recall of I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter. The cause is not yet known. Dr. Paul Lewis, … [Read more...]

FDA On Vulto Creamery Ouleout Cheese Listeria Outbreak

The FDA has released information about its investigation into the deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak linked to recalled Vulto raw milk soft cheeses. Ouleout cheese from that dairy in Walton, New York has been identified as the "likely source" of the outbreak that has sickened six people in four states. Two of those six people have died. The FDA, CDC, and state government agencies have been investigating this outbreak since January 31, 2017. Ouleout cheese from Vulto Creamery tested positive for Listeria monocytogenes bacteria in early March, and the company began contacting its customers, asking them to return the product. On March 7, 2017, Vulto recalled that cheese along with Miranda, Heinennellie, and Willowemoc cheese varieties. Then, on March 8, 2017, the FDA was told that … [Read more...]

Whole Foods Recalled Vulto Creamery Cheese

The listeriosis outbreak linked to recalled Vulto washed-rind raw milk cheeses has sickened six people in four states. Two people have died in this outbreak. All six patients were hospitalized, including a newborn baby who was diagnosed with listeriosis. And there's a mystery in this Listeria monocytogenes outbreak. We don't know exactly where the recalled cheeses that caused these illnesses were sold. The Vulto Creamery cheese has been linked to the outbreak through whole genome sequencing, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, and epidemiological evidence. Labs in two states found the outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes in Ouleout cheese. The New York Division of Milk Control and Dairy Services took three intact wheels of that type of cheese from the Vulto Creamery during an … [Read more...]

Two Dead, Six Ill in Vulto Raw Milk Cheese Listeria Outbreak

The CDC has announced a Listeria monocytogenes outbreak is linked to soft raw milk cheese produced by Vulto Creamery in Walton, New York. Two people have died and six are sickened in this outbreak. The case count by state is: New York (3), Florida (1), Vermont (1), and Connecticut (1). Illnesses began on September 1, 2016. All six patients were hospitalized. One person from Connecticut and one person from Vermont died. One illness was reported in a newborn. Infants can be born with Listeria monocytogenes infections when their mothers eat products contaminated with the bacteria. The bacteria can pass through the placenta because the mother's immune system response attacks the placenta. The outbreak strain of Listeria monocytogenes was identified in samples taken from three intact … [Read more...]

Oregon Health Authority Finds E. coli in I.M. Healthy Products

The Oregon Health Authority has found E. coli O157 in a sample of I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter products taken from the home of two Oregon siblings. Both of the patients, both under the age of 18, were sickened in the outbreak linked to those products. The press release states, "Oregon confirms two E. coli O157 cases linked to national outbreak caused by I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter, Granola." Oregon is one of nine states where patients in this outbreak live. The others are Arizona, California, Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin. The CDC has linked I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter and I.M. Healthy Granola coated with SoyNut Butter to this outbreak. Dr. Paul Cieslak, medical director for the Acute and Communicable Disease Prevention Section at the OHA Public … [Read more...]

CDC Updates I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak

The CDC has updated their investigation into the I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter E. coli O157:H7 outbreak. Now, sixteen people in nine states are sick in this outbreak, an increase of four patients and four states since the original CDC  post just four days ago. Two more people have been hospitalized, and one more person has developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). That means eight people have been hospitalized in this outbreak, for a 50% hospitalization rate. The HUS rate in this outbreak is also high, at 31%. In a typical Shiga toxin-producing E. coli outbreak, only 5 to 10% of patients develop this complication. The outbreak case count by state is: Arizona (4), California (4), Maryland (1), Missouri (1), New Jersey (1), Oregon (2), Virginia (1), Washington (1), and Wisconsin (1). … [Read more...]

How Does E. coli O157:H7 Get Into SoyNut Butter?

The ongoing outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 illnesses linked to recalled I.M. Healthy SoyNut Butter has sickened at least 12 people in five states, most of them children. Because the product is a peanut butter substitute, it was served in daycare centers and in schools. So how does pathogenic bacteria get into a ready to eat product? This shelf stable, ready to eat product is considered benign by most people. But there have been large outbreaks linked to nut butter products in the past, most notably the 2008 Salmonella outbreak linked to the Peanut Corporation of America (PCA) that sickened at least 700 people. There have been more than 90 recalls of nut butters and nuts for bacterial contamiantion since 2001 in this country. Most of the recalls have been issued since 2012. So … [Read more...]

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