March 2005

A seventh child in central Florida has contracted a life-threatening kidney infection after visiting a petting zoo in Orlando. Five of the seven children were hospitalized in critical condition, including one on dialysis, the Orlando Sentinel reported for Thursday editions. Another had been upgraded to stable condition, said Dr. Mehul Dixit, who is treating some

Marler Clark filed a lawsuit Wednesday on behalf of seven people who became ill with Salmonella Enteriditis infections after eating Paramount Farms raw almonds between September, 2003 and May, 2004. The lawsuit was filed in the South Judicial District of the Los Angeles County Superior Court (Case No. NC036770).
All seven plaintiffs had Salmonella infections

On Wednesday, the Orlando Sentinel reported that at least five children were in critical condition in Orlando-area hospitals with Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome, a potentially life-threatening cause of kidney failure. All visited a petting zoo the week before they became ill.
There’s nothing more American than a petting zoo. Countless numbers of children visit petting zoos to have a hands-on experience with farm animals every year. Unfortunately, some children become ill with E. coli O157:H7 infections – the leading cause of Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome in North America. In fact, it is estimated that five to ten percent of persons who become ill with E. coli infections develop Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome.
Most people identify E. coli with undercooked ground beef, but it’s not that simple. E. coli infections are caused by the ingestion of fecal material. So a burger becomes contaminated during the slaughtering process, and children can become infected while playing with livestock that are shedding the bacteria. Just as proper sanitation in slaughterhouses is essential in preventing foodborne illness outbreaks, good hygiene and sanitation in areas where livestock are held are of utmost importance in preventing E. coli outbreaks among petting zoo visitors.
Lightning does strike the same spot twice, or even more often.


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Unfortunately, some people make suspect and unsupportable foodborne illness claims. It is important to develop a reliable method of identifying suspect, unsupportable, or illegitimate foodborne illness claims. In my experience, food industry corporations over-emphasize, and thus over react to, the presence of such claims. Such a strategy can lead to the denial of legitimate claims.

A rise in the number of Escherichia coli cases requires diligent detection efforts.
By Debby Giusti, MT(ASCP)
Ten-year-old Brianne Kiner spent 40 days in a coma in 1993, while teams of medical personnel worked round-the-clock to keep her alive. Brianne has little memory of the 118 days she was on kidney dialysis or the 80 units of blood she received, nor does she recall the numerous times the doctors told her mother that Brianne wouldn’t live through the night. What Brianne does remember is that her hospital ordeal left her with the dubious recognition of being the sickest child in the United States to survive Escherichia coli 0157:H7.
Over a 3-month period, more than 700 children and adults in four states in the northwest became ill after eating at various Jack in the Box restaurants. They suffered severe stomach cramps and diarrhea, often bloody, and close to 200 of the ill had to be hospitalized. Fifty-five cases progressed into hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a condition that can lead to kidney failure and even death. Children and the elderly are most at risk for HUS, and in the 1993 outbreak, four children died.
Epidemiologists quickly recognized that those infected had eaten undercooked hamburgers served at more than 90 Jack in the Box restaurants in the four state area.2 The beef shipped to the restaurants was found to be contaminated with E. coli 0157, and to date, the outbreak remains the largest in U.S. history caused by the organism.


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At least 29 pupils at San Jose Elementary School in Magini, Bohol, Philippines died of likely cyanide poisoning on Wednesday after eating carmelized cassava roots. Health officials said 50 pupils are in critical condition, and at least 100 students became ill with food poisoning after being served the sweetened cassava roots at school. Cassava plant

As the Post-Dispatch reported on February 25, a manager for a warehouse and transportation company in Madison admitted last month to illegally ordering that boxes of chicken be labeled and shipped without proper inspection – including some sent to a school in Joliet, Ill., where dozens of people fell ill.
Edward L. Wuebbels, the manager