December 14, 2019

As Many as 20 Sick in Wisconsin E. coli Lettuce Outbreak

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is investigating an E. coli O157:H7 outbreak in that state that may be linked to lettuce. There may be as many as 20 cases; three of the cases are children. The law firm of Pritzker Hageman has been retained by multiple patients in this outbreak and  is representing two of those children. One is a 4-year-old who is hospitalized and seriously ill, and the other child is 14 and also hospitalized. Dr. Larry Lutwick posted a notice on ProMed-Mail on November 17, 2019 about three women sickened with E. coli O157 infections who live in northwestern Wisconsin; those women told investigators that they ate salad before becoming sick. Since then, there are news reports that there may be people in other states, in particular Illinois, who may also … [Read more...]

Why Are There So Many Outbreaks Linked to Romaine Lettuce?

In the past few years, there have been quite a few food poisoning outbreaks linked to romaine lettuce. Why is this product the source for hundreds of serious illnesses? And why are there so many E. coli outbreaks linked to romaine? The answer lies in three facts: It's very difficult to clean a product that is so delicate and has so many crenelations and areas for bacteria to hide. Second, produce is a raw product and is often eaten without a kill step to destroy pathogens. And third, because leafy greens including romaine grow on the ground and are subject to contamination through irrigation water and animals, and are handled so often between farm to fork, there are many opportunities for contamination. Romaine is difficult to clean Romaine lettuce, along with other leafy … [Read more...]

Mystery Deadly Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak Ends With 24 Sick

The mystery deadly Listeria monocytogenes outbreak that sickened 24 people in 13 states and caused two deaths has been declared over by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with no resolution. The outbreak notice states, "A specific food item, grocery store, food processor, or restaurant chain was not identified as the source of infections in the United States." People who were sickened in this outbreak were sickened by a strain of Listeria bacteria that was closely related genetically to Listeria that made people sick in a Canadian outbreak. That Canadian outbreak was linked to recalled Rosemount frozen cooked chicken. The Listeria outbreak in Canada was deemed over on November 6, 2019. The case count by state is: California (4), Florida (1), Iowa (1), Illinois (4), … [Read more...]

Pig Ear Salmonella Outbreak Has Sickened 143 People in 35 States

The pig ear Salmonella outbreak has now sickened at least 143 people in 35 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Thirty-three people have been hospitalized because they are so sick. People can get sick after handling the treats or caring for or touching the dogs who ate them. Dogs can get sick too. Sixteen ill persons have been added to this investigation after the last update on July 31, 2019. The case count by state is: Alabama (1), Arizona (1), California (1), Colorado (3), Connecticut (1), Florida (3), Georgia (3), Hawaii (1), Illinois (10), Indiana (5), Iowa (23), Kansas (3), Kentucky (6), Louisiana (1), Maine (1), Maryland (1), Massachusetts (4), Michigan (14), Minnesota (1), Missouri (7), New Hampshire (1), New Jersey (3), New Mexico (1), … [Read more...]

Listeria Monocytogenes Outbreak Announced; No Food Identified

A Listeria monocytogenes outbreak has been announced by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Twenty-four people in 13 states are sick. Twenty-two people have been hospitalized, and two people have died. The patient case count by state is: California (4), Florida (1), Iowa (1), Illinois (4), Indiana (1), Kansas (1), Kentucky (1), Michigan (1), Missouri (3), New York (2), Ohio (2), Oregon (2), and Texas (1). Listeria specimens were collected from patients from July 20, 2017 to August 1, 2019. The patient age range is from 35 to 92 years. This is a strange outbreak announcement, because the notice states that "A specific food item, grocery store, or restaurant chain has not been identified as the source of infections in the United States." This is very unusual. In … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Associated With Sun View Produce in Chicago

A Salmonella outbreak that has sickened at least four people is associated with Sun View Produce grocery store in Chicago, Illinois. The outbreak started in early July 2019. The patients got sick after eating pork tamales or carnitas that were served from the deli section at that store. Sun View Produce is located at 6110 West 63rd Street in Chicago. If you ate food purchased from the deli section at that store since July 1, 2019, you may have been exposed to Salmonella bacteria. Symptoms of this illness include fever, chills, nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhea that may be bloody, and symptoms of dehydration. If you have been ill with these symptoms, see your doctor. If you have pork tamales, carnitas, or other hot foods that were purchased from this deli since July 1, … [Read more...]

Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Pig Ear Dog Treats Sickens 45

A Salmonella enterica serotype I 4,[5],12:i:- linked to pig ear dog treats has sickened at least 45 people in 13 states, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Twelve people have been hospitalized because they are so sick. The case count by state is: California (1), Illinois (3), Indiana (3), Iowa (12), Kansas (3), Massachusetts (2), Michigan (7), Missouri (3), New York (6), North Dakota (1), Pennsylvania (2), South Carolina (1), and Wisconsin (1).  Illness onset dates range from November 18, 2018 to June 13, 2019. The patient age range is from less than 1 year to 81 years. Of the 39 people who provided information, 12, or 31%, have been hospitalized. Epidemiologic evidence indicates that contact with pig ear dog treats is the likely source of this … [Read more...]

Three People Sick With E. coli in Winnebago County, Illinois

Three people are sick with E. coli infections in Winnebago County, Illinois, according to the Winnebago County Health Department. Those patients have been experiencing diarrhea beginning May 21, 2019. The exact cause of the illness has not been determined. An outbreak is defined as two people who are not related getting sick with the same illness. E. coli outbreaks in the past have been linked to contaminated water and contaminated food, especially ground beef and leafy greens. Authorities interview these patients to see if they can find a common source for the pathogen. If you or anyone you know has been sick with the symptoms of a Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infection on or after May 21, 2019, contact a healthcare provider, especially if you live in Winnebago County, … [Read more...]

FDA Updates Caito Foods Salmonella Carrau Melon Outbreak

The FDA has updated the Caito Foods Salmonella Carrau melon outbreak. The latest numbers are 137 people sick in 10 states. Thirty-eight people, or  28%,  have been hospitalized because they are so ill, which is a high number for a typical Salmonella outbreak. Usually only 20% of patients are hospitalized when they are sickened with this pathogen. Caito Foods recalled many different types of cut melon products, including Melon Mix, Honeydew Chunks, Cantaloupe Spears, Fruit Burst, Fruit Snack Tray, Watermelon Spear, and Seasonal Fruit Salad among others, on April 12, 2019. Some of these products were sold at Kroger, Spartan Nash, Target, Walmart, and Amazon/Whole Foods locations. It is not likely that any of these products are still in consumer's homes, because the shelf life of … [Read more...]

FDA Weighs In On Frozen Raw Ground Tuna Salmonella Outbreak

The FDA has released information about the frozen raw ground tuna Salmonella Newport outbreak that has sickened at least 13 people in 7 states. The tuna was sourced from Jensen Tuna, and imported from JK Fish of Vietnam. Jensen Tuna voluntarily recalled this tuna on April 15, 2019. The FDA statement says that it's unlikely the ground tuna was sold directly to consumers in grocery stores. They think that it was used to make food dishes, such as sushi and spicy tuna, by restaurants and retailers. The tuna was sold in Connecticut, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota, New York, and Washington state. The patients in this outbreak live in Connecticut, Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota, New York, and Washington state. The tuna could have been distributed to other … [Read more...]

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