E. coli outbreak growing in Georgia, 4 other states, CDC says

Henrietta Strickland
April 12, 2019

Almost 100 people across five states have been sickened by an E.coli outbreak, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Tuesday. Thankfully, no deaths have been reported.

CDC says illnesses started on dates from March 2 to March 29 of this year. States are investigating additional illnesses that might be a part of this outbreak.

The Georgia Department of Public Health said in a news release Wednesday that the number of E. coli cases is expected to increase.

Symptoms of E. coli, which usually begin about three or four days after consuming the bacteria, can include watery or bloody diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps, nausea, and vomiting.

The CDC says the investigation is still ongoing and officials have not yet identified a specific food item, grocery store, or restaurant chain as the source of infections.

Some studies have shown that administering antibiotics to patients with E. coli infections might increase their risk of developing hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS) a type of kidney failure.

"The outbreak certainly looks like some kind of distributed food product, but we don't know what that food is right now". Wash your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom or changing diapers, before preparing or eating food. Outbreak Control Until the matter is resolved, the CDC is urging everyone to be more careful about what they eat or drink, wash fruits and vegetables before consumption, and to cook their food very thoroughly.

"To kill harmful germs, cook beef steaks and roasts to an internal temperature of at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit and allow to rest for three minutes after you remove meat from the grill or stove", the CDC advises. Wash hands, counters, cutting boards and utensils after they touch raw meat.

Lettuce from other parts of the US and Mexico is safe to eat, the CDC says. While many strains of E. coli are harmless, others can cause illness following contamination of foods.

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