November 29, 2021

BBQ Shack E. coli and HUS Outbreak in Toccoa, GA, Lawsuits Inevitable

At least 11 people have contracted E. coli O157:H7 infections in an outbreak linked to the BBQ Shack, a restaurant in Toccoa, Georgia, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health. Ten of the victims of the outbreak are Georgia residents, and one is a resident of South Carolina. Seven of the outbreak victims have been hospitalized, five with hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), the leading cause of kidney failure in children in the United States. HUS-E. coli O157 can be fatal, giving rise to a wrongful death claim. It is still unknown what food item at the restaurant was tainted with E. coli, but according to national food safety lawyer Fred Pritzker, outbreak victims and their families will most likely still have claims against the restaurant. "Restaurant owners are liable for … [Read more...]

World Kidney Day News: Food Poisoning Can Cause Kidney Damage

Today is World Kidney Day and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is raising awareness of kidney health with new research that shows survivors of acute kidney injury are at increased risk of developing permanent kidney damage which can result in decreased kidney function. "We now know acute kidney injury is not the isolated or temporary condition we once believed it to be. However, in many cases, it is preventable and treatable," said Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., director of NIH’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. "We must continue to support research to help us better understand the connection between acute kidney injury and chronic kidney disease, to prevent acute kidney injury in those at risk, and to identify and treat the condition when it does … [Read more...]

E. coli Spinach Hospitalizes Two With Kidney Trouble, HUS

At least two people  have been hospitalized with hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS)  after eating spinach and salad greens tainted with E.coli.  HUS, the most common cause of kidney failure in children, is a condition that develops in some people suffering from E.coli poisoning. The two people hospitalized are among the 28 victims of a five-state E. coli outbreak that has hospitalized 10 people. The outbreak began in New York and now includes cases in Connecticut, Virginia, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. A spinach and spring mix  blend sold at Wegmans grocery stores has been identified as one source of the outbreak. Many of those sickened in New York reported eating  the Wegmans salad blend before becoming ill.  And samples taken from four leftover packages collected from the homes of … [Read more...]

Deadly E coli Outbreak Includes Cases in GA and LA

An E coli outbreak that claimed the life of a Louisiana toddler this week includes cases in multiple states including Georgia and Louisiana, state health department officials told Food Poisoning Bulletin today. A 21-month-old girl was one of three people in Louisiana to be sickened by the pathogen. She was the only fatality. In Georgia, there are five confirmed cases: two in Cobb county and one each in Cherokee, Coweta, and Forsyth counties. One person was hospitalized and released. Investigations in several states are ongoing, but health officials in Louisiana and Georgia say lab tests confirm the pathogen strain in each case is a genetic match. A source of the deadly E coli outbreak has not yet been identified, but state health officials are working collaboratively and in conjunction … [Read more...]

Spartanburg SC, Where All The Restaurants Are Above Average

In Garrison Keillor's fictional hometown, Lake Wobegone, all the women are strong, all the men are good looking and all the children are above average. In Spartanburg, S.C.  it's the restaurants that are all above average including the one that is the source of an E.coli outbreak that has sickened 11 people and hospitalized two. Because all 452 restaurants in Spartanburg have a letter grade of A from the South Carolina Department of Health an Environmental Control's (SCDHEC) restaurant rating system. Earlier this week, when Food Poisoning Bulletin asked how residents in Spartanburg could make safe choices without knowing the name of the restaurant at the source of the outbreak, a SDHEC spokesman said there was not an ongoing threat and they would be OK eating at any of the area … [Read more...]

Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS)

The E. coli 0157:H7 outbreak linked to raw milk produced by Foundation Farm in Oregon has sickened at least 19 people. Fifteen of those victims are children; four of those children have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome. According to the FDA's Bad Bug Book, it can take just 10 cells of E. coli bacteria to make someone sick. Dr. Heidi Kassenborg of the Minnesota Department of Health told us that bacteria aren't evenly distributed in milk fluids, so milk samples withdrawn for testing may not contain any bacteria, when there actually is bacteria in the product. Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) is a severe complication of an infection of Shiga-toxin producing E. coli, usually E. coli O157. The toxins damage red blood cells, which creates small clots that clog the filtering system in the … [Read more...]

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