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  Press Summaries

June 4, 1999

MMWR articles are embargoed until 4 p.m. Eastern time on Thursday.

MMWR Synopsis
  1. Foodborne Botulism from Home-Canned Bamboo Shoots — Thailand, 1998
  2. Trends in HIV-Related Risk Behaviors Among High School Students — Selected U.S. Cities, 1991-1997
  3. Illnesses Associated with Occupational Use of Flea-Control Products — California, Texas, and Washington, 1989-1997
Notices to Readers:

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Synopsis June 4, 1999

Foodborne Botulism from Home-Canned Bamboo Shoots — Thailand, 1998
Home-canned foods need to be properly prepared to prevent botulism.

David Swerdlow, M.D.
CDC, National Center for Infectious Diseases
(404) 639-2206
In April 1998, the Thailand Ministry of Public Health identified an outbreak of botulism caused by consumption of contaminated home-canned bamboo shoots. Botulism is a rare, but serious, paralytic illness caused by a nerve toxin. Bacterial spores that survive an inadequate cooking and canning process grow and produce toxin in the low oxygen environment of the canned food. Although botulism has long been recognized and confirmed in the United States and other developed countries, this is the first confirmed outbreak of botulism in Thailand. Thailand's Field Epidemiology Training Program served a critical role in the investigation, confirmation, and control of this outbreak which was limited to 13 cases and two deaths. For further information about botulism, visit this CDC website

  Trends in HIV-Related Risk Behaviors Among High School Students — Selected U.S. Cities 1991-1997
Sexual activity is down and condom use is up for teens in eight U.S. cities.
Laura Kann, Ph.D.
CDC, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention & Health Promotion
(770) 488-3202
From 1991 to 1997, HIV-related risk behaviors have decreased among high school students nationwide. To determine whether HIV-related risk behaviors among high school students were also declining in urban areas, CDC examined data from eight cities that conducted the Youth Risk Behavior Survey between 1991 and 1997. Those cities were Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Fort Lauderdale, Jersey City, Miami, Philadelphia, and San Diego. The study found that in most of the eight cities, the proportions of high school students who ever had sex, who had sex with multiple partners, and who had sex during the past 3 months decreased significantly. Many factors contributed to the reduction of sexual activity and the increase in condom use by teens, including HIV prevention efforts and parental involvement in the community.

  Illnesses Associated with Occupational Use of Flea-Control Products — California, Texas, and Washington, 1989-1997
Pesticide poisoning continues to occur among workers using flea-control products.
Geoffrey Calvert, M.D., M.P.H.
CDC, National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health
(513) 841-4448
Between 1989 and 1997, 42 cases of pesticide-related illnesses attributed to the occupational use of flea-control products were reported. Sixteen cases were reported by state-based surveillance systems. Eight of these resulted in systemic illnesses, and eight involved chemical conjunctivitis resulting from splashing of flea-control products into workers' eyes. Between 1993 and 1996, an additional 26 occupational poisoning (reported by the Environmental Protection Agency) involved pet-dip products. Most of the products associated with illness contained either phosmet, an organophosphate insecticide, or pyrethrin. Although not currently required, the findings from this report suggest that personal protective equipment may be needed when using these products; workers need to be trained in the safe handling of flea-control products; and safer, less toxic pesticides should be substituted when feasible.

  Notices to Readers:
Contact: Carol Knowles
CDC, Epidemiology Program Office
(404) 639-3673

Changes in National Notifiable Diseases Tables

CDC's Notifiable Infectious Diseases List has been modified. A notifiable disease is one for which regular, frequent, and timely information regarding individual cases is considered necessary for the prevention and control of the disease. Reporting of notifiable diseases is mandated only at the state and local levels. Thus, the list of diseases considered notifiable varies slightly by state. The 56 notifiable diseases are):

  1. Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS)
  2. Anthrax
  3. Botulism
  4. Brucellosis
  5. Chancroid
  6. Chlamydia trachomatis, genital infections
  7. Cholera
  8. Coccidioidomycosis (regional)
  9. Cryptosporidiosis
  10. Cyclosporiasis
  11. Diphtheria
  12. Ehrlichiosis, human granulocytic
  13. Ehrlichiosis, human monocytic
  14. Encephalitis, California serogroup
  15. Encephalitis, eastern equine
  16. Encephalitis, St. Louis
  17. Encephalitis, western equine
  18. Escherichia coli O157:H7
  19. Gonorrhea
  20. Haemophilus influenzae, invasive disease
  21. Hansen disease (leprosy)
  22. Hantavirus pulmonary syndrome
  23. Hemolytic uremic syndrome, post-diarrheal
  24. Hepatitis A
  25. Hepatitis B
  26. Hepatitis C/non A, non B
  27. HIV infection, pediatric
  28. Legionellosis
  29. Lyme disease
  1. Malaria
  2. Measles
  3. Meningococcal disease
  4. Mumps
  5. Pertussis
  6. Plague
  7. Poliomyelitis, paralytic
  8. Psittacosis
  9. Rabies, animal
  10. Rabies, human
  11. Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
  12. Rubella
  13. Rubella, congenital syndrome
  14. Salmonellosis
  15. Shigellosis
  16. Streptococcal disease, invasive, group A
  17. Streptococcus pneumonia, drug resistant invasive disease
  18. Streptococcal toxic-shock syndrome
  19. Syphilis
  20. Syphilis, congenital
  21. Tetanus
  22. Toxic-shock syndrome
  23. Trichinosis
  24. Tuberculosis
  25. Typhoid Fever
  26. Varicella (chickenpox) deaths
  27. Yellow Fever

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