Dept. of Health: Chopped romaine lettuce source of E. Coli

Bacterial colonies

Bacterial colonies

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has released a public statement today advising that a multi-state E. coli outbreak has been linked to chopped romaine lettuce originating from Yuma, Arizona.

So far, 35 cases of E. coli have been reported and linked to the outbreak in Washington, Idaho, Montana, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Virginia.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the states where cases have been reported are: Pennsylvania (9); Idaho (8); New Jersey (7); CT (2); NY (2); OH (2); Virginia (1); Washington (1); Missouri (1); MI (1); and IL (1). Illnesses began on dates ranging from March 22 to March 31, and those infected range in age from 12 to 84. However, the agency says it hasn't identified a common grower, supplier, distributor or brand yet.

Niki Forbing-Orr, public information manager for Idaho health and welfare, said most of the people affected are from the Treasure Valley but others also have been sickened in other parts of the state. Our E. coli lawyers have litigated E. coli and HUS cases stemming from outbreaks traced to ground beef, raw milk, lettuce, spinach, sprouts, and other food products.

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Most individuals infected with E. Coli usually get better within a week, but about 5 to 10 percent of people diagnosed with Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infection are said to develop the potential life-threatening hemolytic uremic syndrome.

Before purchasing romaine lettuce at a grocery store or eating it at a restaurant, consumers should confirm with the store or restaurant that the romaine lettuce did not come from the Yuma, Arizona growing region, the New Jersey Department of Health advised. The chopped romaine lettuce in question was consumed at restaurants and in private homes. This warning includes salad mixes that include romaine lettuce. Restaurants and retailers should ask their suppliers about the source of their chopped romaine lettuce.

An E. coli outbreak is growing in at least eleven states, and IL is one of them.

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