Friday, 19 April, 2019

E.coli outbreak sickens Tennesseans, others — CDC

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Celia Hoffman | 08 April, 2019, 14:43

States reporting sick patients are Georgia (8 patients), Kentucky (36), OH (5), Tennessee (21) and Virginia (2).

The Centers for Disease Control are investigating what it's originating from, but have not identified a specific food item, grocery store or restaurant chain. CBS affiliate WTKR reported that people began getting ill on March 2.

Escherichia coli, or E.coli bacteria, normally lives in the intestines of healthy people and animals.

They say 72 people of all ages have been infected - with eight of those infected winding up in hospitals. Public health investigators have reported 36 E coli cases in Kentucky, 21 E coli cases in Tennessee, 8 E coli cases in Georgia, 5 E coli cases in OH, and 2 E coli cases in Georgia. No deaths have been reported. The CDC has a collection of these fingerprints in a database that aides in identifying potential outbreaks.

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States are said to be investigating additional illnesses that might be a part of this outbreak. Officials have yet to pinpoint the cause or a common source of the infection.

Those infected are said to range in age from 1 to 74 years with a median age of 17. State and local public health officials are interviewing ill people to determine what they ate and other exposures in the week before their illness started.

Antibiotics are not recommended for patients with suspected E. coli infections until diagnostic testing can be performed and E. coli infection is ruled out. Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.

To prevent an E. coli infection, the CDC recommends that people wash their hands, cook meat thoroughly, and avoid cross-contamination of food.

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