ROCKVILLE, Md. -- Several hospitalizations and one death caused by an outbreak of Escherichia coli 0157:H7 has prompted the FDA to warn consumers to avoid bagged fresh spinach, which the agency said is a possible cause of the outbreak.
ROCKVILLE, Md., Sept. 15 -- Several hospitalizations and one death caused by an outbreak of Escherichia coli 0157:H7 has prompted the FDA to warn consumers to avoid bagged fresh spinach, which the agency cited as a possible cause of the outbreak.
The FDA advised consumers not to eat bagged fresh spinach and advised those with diarrhea or other symptoms, if they have already consumed it, to call their physicians.
The most common symptom of E-coli 0157:H7 infection is diarrhea, which sometimes can progress to bloody stools, but most healthy adults recover completely within a week. However, some patients -- especially young children and elderly adults -- can develop hemolytic uremic syndrome. Hemolytic uremic syndrome can lead to serious kidney damage and death.
Robert Brackett, Ph.D., director of FDA's Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, said the agency is working closely with the CDC and state and local agencies to nail down the cause and scope of the problem."
The FDA said that 50 cases of E-coli related illness had been reported to the CDC, including eight cases of hemolytic uremic syndrome and one death. States reporting illnesses were Connecticut, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Wisconsin.
"Given the severity of this illness and the seriousness of the outbreak, FDA believes that a warning to consumers is needed," said Dr. Brackett.