CDC issues warning for all types of romaine lettuce from Yuma, Arizona

April 20, 2018 | By | Reply More

From the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Based on new information, CDC is expanding its warning to consumers to cover all types of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

This warning now includes whole heads and hearts of romaine lettuce, in addition to chopped romaine and salads and salad mixes containing romaine

Do not buy or eat romaine lettuce at a grocery store or restaurant unless you can confirm it is not from the Yuma, Arizona, growing region.

Unless the source of the product is known, consumers anywhere in the United States who have any store-bought romaine lettuce at home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.

Product labels often do not identify growing regions; so, throw out any romaine lettuce if you’re uncertain about where it was grown. This includes whole heads and hearts of romaine, chopped romaine, and salads and salad mixes containing romaine lettuce. If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine, do not eat it and throw it away.

Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

The expanded warning is based on information from newly reported illnesses in Alaska. Ill people in Alaska reported eating lettuce from whole heads of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

Health officials are investigating a multistate outbreak of Shiga toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 (E. coli O157:H7) infections.

53 people infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 have been reported from 16 states.

31 people have been hospitalized, including five people who have developed a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome. No deaths have been reported.

People usually get sick from Shiga toxin-producing E. coli (STEC) 2–8 days (average of 3–4 days) after swallowing the germ.

Most people infected with E. coli develop diarrhea that can be bloody, severe stomach cramps, and vomiting. Most people recover within 1 week. Some infections are very mild, but others are severe or even life-threatening.

Some people with a STEC infection, however, may get a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). HUS can occur in people of any age but is most common in children younger than 5 years, adults aged 65 years and older, and people with weakened immune systems.

HUS develops about 7 days after symptoms first appear, when diarrhea is improving.
Clues that someone is developing HUS include:

  • decreased frequency of urination,
  • feeling very tired, and
  • losing pink color in cheeks and inside the lower eyelids.

People with HUS should be hospitalized because their kidneys may stop working and they may develop other serious problems.

Most people with HUS recover within a few weeks, but some suffer permanent damage or die.
E. coli infection is usually diagnosed by testing a stool sample.

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Category: E coli, Food-borne illness

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