At least 56 people in Washington have contracted Salmonella poisoning from eating contaminated pork. Five people were hospitalized.
The outbreak includes residents from eight counties who ate the tainted meat at a variety of events. Some people reported eating pork from whole roasted pigs, cooked and served at private events before they became ill.
Salmonellosis is an infection that develops when food or beverages contaminated with fecal matter containing Salmonella bacteria is ingested. Symptoms, which include diarrhea, abdominal pain and fever, usually appear within six to 72 hours of exposure and last up to a week. In some cases, the diarrhea may be so severe that hospitalization is required. These patients can develop a more serious, sometimes fatal, infection that spreads from the intestines to the blood stream.
Those most at risk for Salmonella infection are young children, seniors, pregnant women and those with compromised immune systems.
The case were reported form the following counties: King (44), Snohomish (4), Mason (2), Thurston (2), Pierce (1), Grays Harbor (1), Yakima (1), and Clark (1). Five of the cases were hospitalized; no deaths have been reported. The investigation is ongoing.