September 25, 2016

What You Need to Know About Shigellosis

Shigella has been making headlines recently with outbreaks in California and Texas. Although it sickens an estimated half million Americans each year, many people are unfamiliar with the bacteria. Here's what you need to know. Shigella is highly contagious. People who have a Shigella infection, called shigellosis, should stay home. There are four species of Shigella. Shigella sonnei- the most common in the U.S.,  Shigella flexneri, Shigella boydii, and Shigella dysenteriae- which causes deadly epidemics but is rare in the U.S.. Nationwide, about 500,000 cases of shigellosis are reported annually. Unlike Norovirus, which is also highly contagious, Shigella doesn't have a “season.” (Norovirus season is form October through February.) Shigella affects people of all ages, but young … [Read more...]

Shigellosis Strikes Lubbock TX Schools and Daycares

Daycare centers and schools in Lubbock, Texas have reported an increase in the number of reported cases of shigellosis. Typically, only a few cases of the highly contagious bacterial infection are reported each month, but since September 1, 71 conformed cases have been reported. Shigella is spread person-to-person, when unwashed or inadequately washed hands of an infected person touch food that is eaten by others or items which are then handled by others. Symptoms of an infection, which include fever, vomiting and stomach cramps, usually develop within one to three days of exposure and last up to seven days. Shigellosis is highly contagious. Anyone who has it should remain at home to help prevent the spread of illness. Good hand washing is the best defense against shigellosis. … [Read more...]

Mariscos San Juan Shigella Outbreak Sickens 141

A Shigella outbreak at the San Jose restaurant has sickened 141 people and reports of additional illness are still coming in, according to public health department. Many people were hospitalized; 12 were admitted to intensive care. Almost all of those who became ill ate at the San Jose restaurant located at 205 N. 4th Street in San Jose on Friday, October 16 or Saturday, October 17. The origin of the outbreak has not yet been determined. Health officials are expecting results of tests on all food handlers this week. Most of cases, 118, are from Santa Clara County, the other 23 cases are from Alameda, Santa Cruz and San Mateo counties. Forty nine of the case are lab-confirmed; 35 of those are Santa Clara County residents. All of the cultures have come back as Shigella sonnei, the most … [Read more...]

Drug Resistant Shigella Outbreak Strikes 32 States

An outbreak of drug-resistant shigellosis originating with travel outside the U.S. then spreading here sickened 157 people in 32 states and Puerto Rico between May 2014 and February 2015, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). A related outbreak in San Francisco sickened another 86 people. At least 19 people were hospitalized. Tests performed by the CDC's National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System (NARMS) laboratory determined Shigella strains from this cluster of illnesses were resistant to ciprofloxacin, the antibiotic recommended for treatment of shigellosis, the illness caused by the Shigella bacteria. In the U.S., about 500,000 cases of shigellosis are reported each year. This disease is spread via the fecal-oral route meaning … [Read more...]

Shigella at Zov’s in Irvine Prompts Brief Closure

A cluster of four Shigella illnesses prompted a brief closure of Zov’s restaurant in Irvine Wednesday. Those sickened ate at Zov’s on Portola between September 16-22. During the closure, the staff of Zov’s discarded all its fresh produce and ready-to-eat foods and sanitized the restaurant. The staff, which cannot return to work until they are cleared by the health department, was temporarily replaced with employees from other Zov’s locations in Orange County. The staff was also given training in proper hand washing as Shigella infections are transmitted when food contaminated with microscopic amounts of feces from an infected person is eaten. Symptoms of a Shigella infection include diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever lasting five to seven days.  Anyone who ate at the restaurant and … [Read more...]

Shigella at Zov’s in Irvine Prompts Brief Closure

A cluster of four Shigella illnesses prompted a brief closure of Zov’s restaurant in Irvine Wednesday. Those sickened ate at Zov’s on Portola between September 16-22. During the closure, the staff of Zov's discarded all its fresh produce and ready-to-eat foods and sanitized the restaurant. The staff, which cannot return to work until they are cleared by the health department, was temporarily replaced with employees from other Zov's locations in Orange County. The staff was also given training in proper hand washing as Shigella infections are transmitted when food contaminated with microscopic amounts of feces from an infected person is eaten. Symptoms of a Shigella infection include diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever lasting five to seven days.  Anyone who ate at the restaurant and … [Read more...]

True Food Had Food Safety Problems Before Shigella Outbreak

The Shigella outbreak linked to True Food Kitchen at Fashion Island in Newport Beach, Calif. isn't the first time the restaurant has had food safety problems. A review of  restaurant inspection reports from the Orange County Health Department shows that in November 2013 the restaurant was investigated for alleged foodborne illness and has had food safety violations at all inspections since January 2103. During an inspection conducted June 9 2014, health inspectors found violations such as fruit flies, improper food storage and missing tiles in the back of the dish wash area. The missing tiles were noted on the restaurants first inspection posted online in January 2013 and each thereafter. The missing tiles left a porous surface exposed which could be a potential breeding ground for … [Read more...]

Shigella Sickens 158 at Salsarita’s in Walmart Home Office Food Court

A Shigella outbreak at Salsarita's in the Bentonville, Ark. Walmart home office food court has sickened 158, health authorities say. So far, 19 cases of shigellosis have been confirmed and another 139 are probable. The restaurant, operated by Eurest, was temporarily closed for food safety violations including employees not washing their hands, employees touching food with their bare hands and juices from raw chicken dripping onto bottled drinks in the refrigerator. Another inspection is scheduled this week. Shigella bacteria is found in fecal matter. Food related Shigella outbreaks are often caused by food workers who contaminate food by touching it or food preparation surfaces after using the bathroom and not washing hands or not washing them properly. When ingested, Shigella … [Read more...]

Shigella Outbreak Closes Walmart Home Office Restaurant

A Shigella outbreak at Salsarita's, a restaurant in the food court of the Walmart home office in Bentonville, Ark., prompted the restaurant's closure after health inspectors found several food safety violations including employees not washing their hands, touching food with their bare hands and juices from raw chicken dripping on to bottled drinks in the refrigerator. Dozens of Walmart employees became ill after eating at the restaurant last week. Shigella is transmitted when an infected person does not wash hands properly and then touches food or a surface used to prepare food. After it is ingested, the Shigella bacteria causes an infection called shigellosis. Symptoms, which include diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, set in one or two days after ingestion and last up to a week. … [Read more...]

Shigella Outbreaks in Texas, South Dakota and Indiana

Shigella outbreaks have been reported in Texas, South Dakota and Indiana.  Shigella is a bacteria often found in water contaminated by human feces. Health authorities say people with diarrhea should not got to work, especially if they work with food, and should not go swimming. Hand washing is the best way to prevent the spread of bacteria. “Every person who uses the pool has a responsibility to maintain a healthy swimming environment,” said Indiana State Health Commissioner William VanNess, M.D. “Swimmers should stay out of the pool if ill or recently ill, especially with diarrhea. This includes children wearing swim diapers, as swim diapers are not waterproof.” The Indiana outbreak includes at least five counties: Marion, Hamilton, Hancock, Hendricks and Johnson. Symptoms of a … [Read more...]

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