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Chopped Romaine Lettuce Unsafe? Multistate E. Coli Outbreak Linked To Vegetable

17 April 2018

The agency has not identified a common grower, supplier, distributor or brand.

The outbreak is the same potentially deadly strain of E. coli, 0157:H7, that occurred late a year ago in the US and Canada, but the CDC does not believe it is connected with the earlier outbreak.

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As of Friday, April 13, 35 people from 11 states have already been infected with the outbreak strain. The following Monday, the Montana Department of Public Health and Human Services (DPHHS) announced three confirmed and four pending cases were likely linked to chopped romaine lettuce sourced from the winter growing areas in Yuma, bringing the nationwide total to at least 45 cases. The restaurants used to have bagged, chopped romaine lettuce in order to make the salads.

"Consumers anywhere in the United States who have store-bought chopped romaine lettuce at home, including salads and salad mixes containing chopped romaine lettuce, should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick", the CDC said. A smaller number of cases were reported in Connecticut, New York, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, Virginia, and Washington state, CR reported. Some people infected with E. Coli also present with a low-grade fever below 101 degrees, but most get better within five to seven days.

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- Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any chopped romaine lettuce, including salads and salad mixes containing chopped romaine lettuce, from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

Colonies of E. coli bacteria grown on a Hektoen enteric (HE) agar plate are seen in a microscopic image courtesy of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Three cases of E. Coli have been identified in Flathead County and another four suspected cases await laboratory testing statewide. Some of its types are pathogenic that can cause illness through exposure to contaminated food or water, or contact with animals or other people. The CDC advises anyone with these symptoms to seek medical attention as E. coli infection is typically diagnosed via a stool sample.

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Chopped Romaine Lettuce Unsafe? Multistate E. Coli Outbreak Linked To Vegetable