CDC Issues Warning Over Romaine Lettuce E. coli Fears

Jenny Cheng  Business Insider

Jenny Cheng Business Insider

Recently, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced a massive, multistate outbreak of E. coli from romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Arizona. Just in case, we have made a decision to issue a warning retroactively for romaine lettuce sold before the warning for whole heads of lettuce was issued.

This particular E. coli outbreak is linked to a potentially deadly strain of the bacteria, called E. coli O157:H7.

This expanded warning stems from a newly discovered outbreak at an Alaskan correctional facility. As of April 20, Montana had seven confirmed cases across four counties — one in Lincoln County, two in Missoula, one in Ravalli and three in Flathead. Of the 31 people who have been hospitalized from the romaine lettuce outbreak, five had this complication. So far, no deaths have been reported.

Fortunately for Davis, romaine lettuce doesn't typically top her shopping list.

While the outbreak came as the harvest of romaine in the Yuma area was almost finished, Alameda says he worries about the incident's effect on sales of the California crop, whose production is ongoing.

Previously, CDC officials had only warned against chopped romaine by itself or as part of salads and salad mixes.

At this time, government public health officials are telling consumers to avoid eating all types of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

If you believe you may have eaten contaminated romaine, the CDC recommends you get medical attention immediately. Though no reports of E.coli are here on Guam, some local grocery stores are the public their lettuce is safe. Symptoms include bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramping and vomiting.

Matos said there is no association between the USA cases and an E. coli outbreak in Edmonton that has sickened 34 people, including 11 who were hospitalized and one patient who died, likely due to E. coli infection. He said he thought this meant cross-contamination may have occurred sometime in the distribution process, resulting in an outbreak involving a number of brands or distributors.

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