April 15, 2024

Shigellosis Outbreak at Small Pharaoh #1 Food Cart in Portland, Oregon

A Shigellosis outbreak at Small Pharaoh #1 Food Cart at SW 5th and Stark in downtown Portland, Oregon has sickened at least four people. Four cases are confirmed, and there are three other presumptive cases with symptoms who have not been tested, according to the Multnomah County Health Department.

Shigellosis Outbreak at Small Pharaoh #1 Food Cart in Portland, Oregon

The food cart was closed on Tuesday, August 11, 2020 after public health officials linked the cart to the illnesses. This is the first food cart closure in Multnomah county in many years for food concerns. Food carts are inspected, regulated, and scored just like brick and mortar restaurants in that county.

Shigellosis is caused by the shigella bacteria that is spread through food, water, or person to person. The bacteria is transmitted through the fecal-oral route. Symptoms usually begin about 4 to 48 hours after exposure to the pathogen. Those symptoms can include fever, diarrhea that can sometimes be bloody, abdominal pain, vomiting, and tenesmus, which is the painful sensation of needing to pass stool even when the bowels are empty.

Serious complications of this illness can include sepsis, or blood poisoning, seizures, and hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), which can cause kidney failure, stroke, coma and death. About 30% of diagnosed shigellosis cases require hospitalization.

About 500,000 cases of shigellosis are diagnosed in the United States every year. Young children are at the greatest risk of serious complications from this infection. Symptoms usually last about a week, but it can take months before a patient returns to normal.

Shigella can spread easily from person to person, so anyone in the same household as someone who is sick is at risk of contracting this infection. If someone in your household is sick, you should disinfect your house, especially the bathroom, and wash your hands well before preparing food and eating.

Diagnosed patients all ate food from the cart; they are from different households. Anyone who is experiencing symptoms of shigellosis who ate at the downtown Portland  location of Small Pharaoh #1 between July 27 and August 11, 2020 should contact their doctor. You may be part of this Shigellosis outbreak at Small Pharaoh #1.

Any health care provider with a patient who tests positive for shigellosis should contact an infectious disease specialist and the Multnomah County Health Department about drug resistance. Shigella is a reportable illness.

Pritzker Hageman Food Safety Lawyers

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a shigellosis infection after eating at Small Pharaoh #1 food cart in downtown Portland, Oregon, please contact our experienced attorneys for help at 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.


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