May 21, 2019

E. coli O103 Outbreak in Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, and Indiana

The E. coli O103 outbreak originally announced in Kentucky yesterday  apparently also has sickened people living in Tennessee, Ohio, and Indiana, according to news reports. Twenty confirmed cases are in Kentucky, and one each in the other states for a total of 23 ill. Most of the illnesses occurred between March 5 and 25, 2019.

E. coli O103 Outbreak in Kentucky Indiana Ohio Tennessee

The cases in Kentucky are spread among several counties throughout the state. Fayette¬†county, in the northeastern part of the state, has the most cases with five. But officials say there isn’t enough commonality between those five cases to establish a source of the pathogen.

No source, whether food or venue, has been named in this outbreak, but officials in Kentucky have stated that “extensive exposure to fast food” may be linked to these illnesses. Fast food outlets have been the sources of food poisoning outbreaks in the past.

At least six people are hospitalized because their illnesses are so severe. Hospitalizations usually occur with an E. coli infection because of dehydration or the development of hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a serious complication that can cause kidney failure. We don’t know the ages of those hospitalized or if they have recovered.

Children under the age of five are most likely to develop HUS after an E. coli infection. Officials have said that people of all ages are sick in this outbreak.

Fred Pritzker and Ryan Osterholm

You can call Ryan or Fred for help if you think you may be part of this E. coli O103 outbreak, at 1-888-377-8900.

Food safety attorney Fred Pritzker, who has represented many clients sickened with E. coli infections and HUS, said, “No one should be sick enough to be hospitalized just because they ate fast food. And since people are now sick in three states, the source is most likely a widely distributed food.” Ryan Osterholm, an attorney with Pritzker Hageman, added, “As we have seen time and time again with previous E. coli outbreaks, you never know how many people will end up sickened until it is long over. Hopefully we will have answers soon.”

The symptoms of an Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infection include abdominal and stomach cramps that are very painful, and diarrhea that is watery and bloody. The symptoms of HUS include little urine output, lethargy, tiredness, and pale skin. If you or anyone you know is suffering with these symptoms, they should see a doctor as soon as possible.

Bad Bug Law Team | Pritzker Law Firm

If you or a loved one have been sickened with an E. coli O103 infection or HUS, please contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900.

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