Update on Multi-State Outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 Infections From Fresh Spinach, September 26, 2006
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As of 1 PM (ET) September 26, 2006, Tuesday, 183 persons infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7 have been reported to CDC from 26 states.
Among the ill persons, 95 (52%) were hospitalized, 29 (16%) developed a type of kidney failure called hemolytic-uremic syndrome (HUS), and an adult in Wisconsin died. One hundred thirty-one (72%) were female and 17 (9%) were children under 5 years old. The proportion of persons who developed HUS was 30% in children (<18 years old), 8% in persons 18 to 59 years old, and 15% in persons 60 years old or older. Among ill persons who provided the date when their illnesses began, 85% became ill between August 19 and September 5. The peak time when illnesses began was August 30 to September 1 -- 33% of persons with the outbreak strain became ill on one of those 3 days.
Two deaths among suspect cases have been reported. Suspect cases are not known to have been infected with the outbreak strain, so are not included in the confirmed case count. Idaho is investigating a suspect case in a 2-year-old child with HUS who died on September 20 and reportedly had recently consumed fresh spinach. E. coli O157 has not been detected in the child. Maryland is investigating a suspect case in an elderly woman who died on September 13 and had recently consumed fresh spinach. E. coli O157 was cultured from her stool, but “DNA fingerprinting” to determine whether it is the outbreak strain has not been possible.
E. coli O157 was isolated by state public health laboratories in Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Ohio from three more opened packages of spinach. The “DNA fingerprint”of the strain isolated in Pennsylvania matches that of the outbreak strain. “DNA fingerprinting” is underway on the strains isolated in Illinois and Ohio.
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For more information about the outbreak, about the investigation, and for prevention guidance, see E. coli O157:H7 Outbreak from Fresh Spinach.
Page last modified September 26, 2006
Content source: National Center for Infectious Diseases