FRIDAY, Aug. 26, 2022 (HealthDay News) — A total of 84 people in four states have now fallen ill from E. coli, in an outbreak likely linked to contaminated lettuce used in sandwiches sold at Wendy’s restaurants.
“Since the last update on August 19, 2022, another 47 disease cases have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in an updated statement released Thursday. This includes 53 cases in Michigan, 23 cases in Ohio, 6 in Indiana and two cases in Pennsylvania.
Diseases caused by bacteria in the digestive tract are often severe.
“38 people have been hospitalized, including 8 people in Michigan with some form of the kidneys The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said the failure is called hemolytic uremic syndrome, although “no deaths have been reported.”
The exact source of the outbreak has not been officially confirmed, but the CDC said that in 84% of cases people reported eating at Wendy’s before they got sick.
The agency noted that, “Of the 17 people with detailed information about what they ate at Wendy’s, 15 (88%) reported that they ate romaine lettuce served on burgers and sandwiches.
On August 19, Wendy’s announced that it had removed romaine lettuce from its sandwiches in Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
“Wendy is taking the precautionary measure to remove the romaine lettuce used in sandwiches from restaurants in that area,” the CDC said. “Investigators are working to confirm whether romaine lettuce was the source of this outbreak, and whether the romaine lettuce used in Wendy’s sandwiches was offered or sold at other companies.”
The CDC said romaine lettuce sold in grocery stores does not appear to be affected, and people can still eat at Wendy’s and eat romaine lettuce in the salads it sells. Wendy’s explained in a statement that the lettuce used in its salads is different from the lettuce used in sandwiches.
“We are fully cooperating with public health authorities in their ongoing investigations into the regional outbreaks of E. coli that have been reported in some Midwestern states,” the company said. “While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has not yet confirmed a specific food as the source of this outbreak, we are taking precautions to phase out and replace lettuce in some restaurants in that area.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said most people with E. coli infection “begin to feel sick 3 to 4 days after eating or drinking something that contains the bacteria.” “However, illnesses can start anywhere from one to 10 days after exposure.” Diseases usually last from 5 to 7 days.
What do I do:
- Watch out for severe E. coli symptoms, which include Diarrhea lasting more than three days or diarrhea accompanied by a Fever higher than 102 degrees Fahrenheit, bloody diarrhea, vomiting And less urination.
- If you experience these symptoms, contact your doctor immediately.
- Keep track of what and where you ate in the week before you got sick and report to your local or state health department.
To learn more about the outbreak, head over to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Sources: US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, press release, August 25, 2022; Wendy’s statement, August 19, 2022