May 29, 2024

New York Cyclospora Outbreak Sickens Eleven People; More May Be Diagnosed

A cyclospora outbreak in New York state has sickened at least 11 people, according to a joint statement  from the New York State Department of Health, Albany County Department of Health, Montgomery County Public Health, Saratoga County Public Health, and Schenectady County Public Health Services.  Officials are interviewing the patients to determine if they ate at the same restaurants or purchased the same food before getting sick.

New York State Cyclospora Outbreak Sickens Eleven

Several patients have said they ate at these establishments:

  • The Italian American Community Center in Albany
  • A buffet during a private graduation event at Union College in Schenectady
  • Prime Life Restaurant at Beltrone Senior Living Community Center in Colonie

Each of these venues is cooperating with the investigation. There is no indication that poor food handling or improper preparation are related to these illnesses. Contamination of produce, if that is what sickened these people, usually occurs before its arrival at a restaurant or distribution center. More establishments may be identified as the investigation into this New York cyclospora outbreak proceeds.

Attorney Fred Pritzker

You can contact food safety attorney Fred Pritzker for help by calling 1-888-377-8900.

Cyclosporiasis, the illness caused by a one-celled microscopic parasite called Cyclospora cayetanensis, causes watery and explosive diarrhea. Other symptoms include weight loss, cramps, bloating, fatigue, and nausea. Symptoms usually start 1 to 2 weeks after a person ingests contaminated food. If untreated, this illness can last for months and recur suddenly without warning. This illness is not transmitted person-to-person.

In previous years, cyclospora outbreaks have been linked to many different types of fresh produce. Last year, one outbreak was linked to McDonald’s salads, and another to Del Monte vegetable trays sold at Kwik Trip stores in the midwest.

Public health officials are asking that anyone in the area who has been sick with diarrhea for three days or more contact their healthcare provider. A special test needs to be requested to diagnose this illness. A certain course of antibiotics is required to treat this infection; however, individuals who are allergic to sulfa drugs do not currently have an effective course o treatment.

The Department of Health has issued a Healthcare Provider Alert so doctors know about this outbreak and can be alerted to the illness in patients. Physicians are also being advised about the appropriate testing methods and courses of treatment.


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