August 19, 2019

Siga Logistics Basil Imported From Mexico May Be Source of Cyclospora Outbreaks

There are now six cyclospora outbreaks sickening people in several states around the country. What is the culprit?  Past outbreaks have been linked to lettuce, raspberries, and cilantro. We may have an answer today: the FDA has just released information stating that there is a multistate outbreak of cyclospora illnesses potentially linked to Siga Logistics basil. The full company name is Siga Logistics de RL de CV that is located in Morelos, Mexico.

Siga Logistics Basil Imported From Mexico May Be Source of Cyclospora Outbreaks

The investigation is ongoing, but CDC’s analysis of epidemiologic information indicates that the contaminated fresh basil is the likely cause of the illnesses. Fresh basil available at points of sale where people got sick was exported into the country by Siga Logistics. The FDA is working with the firm to facilitate a recall.

These are the current cyclospora outbreaks so far in 2019. We do not know if any or all of these outbreaks are linked to basil imported by Siga Logistics.

  • A cyclospora outbreak in Northern Virginia and the Arlington area has sickened at least 55 people. More than 40 are sick from “two large businesses in the area,” which have not been named.
  • In the Boston area and throughout Massachusetts, a cyclospora outbreak has sickened more than 100 people, according to the Massachusetts Department of Health.
  • Increases in cases of cyclosporiasis in the New York City area is worrying public health officials. More than 90 cases have been reported in that city.
  • A cyclospora outbreak in Michigan is associated with Taste restaurant in South Haven. At least eight people are ill in that outbreak.
  • A cyclospora outbreak in Minnesota is associated with three different restaurants. At least 35 people are sick with lab-confirmed cases.
  • An outbreak of cyclosporiasis in Jacksonville, Florida at the Cooper’s Hawk Winery and Restaurant has sickened at least 80 people. The law firm of Pritzker Hageman filed the first lawsuit in that outbreak on behalf of a resident of that city.

The FDA says that consumers should not buy, eat, or serve any fresh basil imported by Siga Logistics de RL de CV from Morelos, Mexico. Contact your retailer if you aren’t sure. If you can’t determine whether or not the fresh basil you purchased is from this company, throw it away.

The main symptom of cyclosporiasis is watery and explosive diarrhea that can seem to go away and then recurs. Other symptoms include loss of appetite, weight loss, increased gas, stomach cramps and pain, nausea, headache, fever, and fatigue. If this infection is not treated, it can recur for weeks or months.

Cyclospora infections can go untreated because the diagnostic tool for this parasite is not usually ordered when a patient presents with the symptoms of the illness. A special test is required, and a doctor must order it. There is an antibiotic that is effective against this parasite, but anyone who is allergic to sulfa can’t take it.

If you have purchased fresh basil in the last few weeks and have been experiencing these symptoms, see your doctor and ask for a cyclospora test. You may be part of these outbreaks.

Bad Bug Law Team | Pritzker Law Firm

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

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