5 dead, nearly 200 sickened in romaine lettuce outbreak

Four more deaths have been linked to a national food poisoning outbreak blamed on tainted Arizona-grown romaine lettuce

Four more deaths have been linked to a national food poisoning outbreak blamed on tainted Arizona-grown romaine lettuce

In a June 1 advisory, the agency said that four additional deaths were reported in Arkansas, North Carolina and NY in addition to the original death in California.

Health officials said 25 more cases have been added, raising the total number of illnesses to 197 in 35 states.

This is the biggest Shiga-toxin producing E. coli outbreak since a 2006 outbreak linked to spinach grown in the Salinas Valley in California, Wise said recently. "That's really the concern at this point".

So far, five people in MI have been sickened in the outbreak. Eighty-nine people have been hospitalized.

This undated photo shows romaine lettuce shot in the Houston Chronicle newspaper studio.


What is still not known is exactly where the lettuce was tainted by the E. coli.

"It is unlikely that any romaine lettuce from the Yuma growing region is still available in stores or restaurants, due to its 21-day shelf life", said the FDA. The most recent case started on May 6, 2018.

As before, a large percentage, 89%, of people interviewed said they ate romaine lettuce the week before they got sick. Prices for whole heads of romaine lettuce were down 60%. Some patients did not report eating the lettuce, though they had close contact with someone else who'd become infected. Officials have still not targeted the exact source of the lettuce but have focused on Yuma, Arizona.

Food and Drug Administration officials said, however, that romaine now for sale on grocery shelves is safe to eat. This includes washing hands after using the bathroom or after changing a baby's diaper; washing your hands after contact with an animal; and washing your hands before preparing food.

The Minneapolis law firm of Pritzker Hageman represents and helps people who have been sickened by contaminated food such as contaminated produce. Please note that class action lawsuits are typically not appropriate for outbreak victims because these types of cases are very unique.

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