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Outbreak: Eat your Greens, Beware of Lettuce

When you plant lettuce, if it does not grow well, you never blame the lettuce- Thich Nhat Hanh

Fifty-Three cases of Escherichia coli infections across 16 states in the United States, linked to romaine lettuce consumption led to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issuing warnings to consumers last week.

All the  lettuce contaminated with the E.coli O157:H7 strain has so far been traced to Yuma, Arizona and the public are advised not to buy or consume any lettuce except it has been confirmed that it was not grown there. The warning includes whole heads and hearts of romaine lettuce, in addition to chopped romaine and salads and salad mixes containing romaine.

Although no deaths have been reported, 31 of the 53 cases of E.coli infections required hospitalization.  The infected states include Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Illinois, Virginia, Missouri, Louisiana, Arizona, California, Idaho, Montana, Washington and Alaska.

Escherichia coli O157:H7 is a Shiga-toxin producing strain which causes hemolytic uremic syndrome with symptoms of bloody diarrhea, decreased frequency of urination, paleness and lethargy.

Meanwhile, the CDC continues to investigate and monitor the outbreak and more information on the warning and latest updates are available on the CDC website.

Medic-ALL 2018

Ref: CDC Website

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