July 17, 2024

Kentucky E. coli O103 Outbreak Linked to Fast Food Consumption

An E. coli O103 outbreak in Kentucky has been linked to fast food consumption, according to a release from the Kentucky Department for Public Health. The Kentucky E. coli outbreak has sickened at least 19 people. Those illnesses have been confirmed by the Kentucky Department of Public Health. The release is intended for doctors and lab providers, so they are alert to patients who present with acute diarrheal illness.

Kentucky E. coli O103 Outbreak Fast Food

Some news reports state that less than 25 cases have been reported. Those sickened are mostly children and teenagers, but some adults are also part of the outbreak. The cases were reported March 5 though March 25, 2018 and had “extensive exposure to fast food.” Most of those sickened live in central Kentucky, especially Fayette County. The Mercer County Health Department posted this information on its Facebook page.

No specific fast food outlet or restaurant chain has been named in this E. coli O103 outbreak. Officials in Kentucky told news outlets that this increase in cases is “sudden.” We don’t know if anyone has been hospitalized and don’t know what food may have caused these illnesses. E. coli outbreaks in the past few years have been linked to leafy greens, ground beef, and other produce.

E. coli O103 is part of the non-O157 group of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) bacteria.

The symptoms of an E. coli infection include severe and painful abdominal and stomach cramps, and diarrhea that is typically bloody and watery. Symptoms start two to eight days after exposure to the pathogen, and can last for a week.  Because the symptoms are so severe, most people sickened by this pathogen seek medical attention.

Attorney Fred Pritzker

Lawyer Fred Pritzker, who has represented many clients sickened with E. coli infections, said, “This infection is serious and can be life-threatening.” Call 1-888-377-8900 for help.

Food safety attorney Fred Pritzker said, “There have been food poisoning outbreaks linked to fast food in the past. I hope that the health departments in Kentucky can release more specific information about these illnesses soon.”

The fact that children are sickened in this outbreak is troubling, since the age group most likely to develop hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) is children under the age of 5. There is no information that any of the patients have developed HUS.

Symptoms of HUS include little or no urine output, lethargy, easy bruising, and a skin rash. This complication can cause kidney failure and seizures, so anyone experiencing these symptoms should see a doctor immediately. Those people may be part of this Kentucky E. coli O103 outbreak.

The noted law firm Pritzker Hageman helps people who have been sickened by contaminated food protect their legal rights and get answers and compensation. Our lawyers help patients and families of children in personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits against schools, retailers, grocery stores, food processors, restaurants, and others. Attorney Fred Pritzker and his team won $7.5 million for a young client whose kidneys failed because he developed hemolytic uremic syndrome after an E. coli infection. You should know that class action lawsuits may not be appropriate for outbreak victims because each individual case is different.


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