Although Ohio and Michigan officials count nearly 50 ill, the CDC announced today that 35 confirmed cases of E. coli O157:H7 have been linked both epidemiologically and by molecular fingerprinting to this outbreak, 17 in Michigan and 18 in Ohio. The onset of illness in these patients occurred from 5/30/08 to 6/14/08. Nineteen ill persons have been hospitalized. One patient has developed a type of kidney failure called hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS). No deaths linked to the outbreak have been reported. Twenty-two (63%) of patients are female. Patients range in age from 4 to 78 years with a median age of 22 years.
After the tomato industry was thrown under the bus, the CDC announced today that it was only "an initial epidemiologic investigation comparing foods eaten by ill and well persons identified consumption of raw tomatoes as strongly linked to illness. Recently, many clusters of illnesses have been identified in Texas and other states among persons who ate at restaurants. These clusters have led us to broaden the investigation to be sure that it encompasses food items that are commonly consumed with tomatoes."
The CDC also announced new numbers – 851 persons infected with Salmonella Saintpaul with the same genetic fingerprint have been identified in 36 states and the District of Columbia. The number of ill persons identified in each state is as follows: Arkansas (10 persons), Arizona (39), California (10), Colorado (11), Connecticut (4), Florida (1), Georgia (18), Idaho (3), Illinois (91), Indiana (11), Kansas (14), Kentucky (1), Maine (1), Maryland (29), Massachusetts (21), Michigan (6), Minnesota (2), Missouri (12), New Hampshire (3), Nevada (4), New Jersey (4), New Mexico (90), New York (26), North Carolina (5), Ohio (6), Oklahoma (19), Oregon (10), Pennsylvania (8), Rhode Island (3), Tennessee (6), Texas (346), Utah (2), Virginia (22), Vermont (2), Washington (4), Wisconsin (6), and the District of Columbia (1). Among the 581 persons with information available, illnesses began between April 10 and June 20, 2008, including 173 who became ill on June 1 or later.
USA Today reports that, “CDC broadens its investigation of salmonella outbreak.”