Three people have developed HUS. The earlier victim has since been released from the hospital. Nine people were infected in Pennsylvania, more than any other state. The names of the women have not been released for privacy reasons.
FDA and CDC urge consumers who think they might have symptoms of an E. coli infection should consult their healthcare provider immediately. In a race against time, they are trying to figure out exactly what food is causing the multi-state outbreak so they can remove it from the food supply before too many other people become sick or possibly die. So far, six of the victims have been hospitalized, with only one developing severe complications - hemolytic uremic syndrome and kidney failure. That includes salads and salad mixes that contain romaine lettuce.
The advice is based on interviews with 28 of the ill individuals in which 93% of them reported consuming romaine lettuce within the week they began feeling sick.
About 90 percent of all the Romaine lettuce grown in the United States between November and March is grown in and around the Yuma area, according to the city's website.
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So far, this outbreak has sickened 35 people, 22 of which have been hospitalized, over 11 states. All we know so far is that this potentially deadly bacteria has infected people in states on both coasts of the USA, and that it's sickening both young and old alike: the 17 ill patients range from age 12 to 84, and 65% are females. No deaths have been reported to date. This takes an average of two to three weeks.
If you have store-bought chopped romaine lettuce at home you should not eat it and you should throw it away. The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare says E. coli infections are linked to lettuce from Yuma, Arizona.
The CDC confirmed the outbreak this week, but said the source of the bacterial infection is still unclear. An investigation points toward romaine lettuce originating from Arizona as the cause, but at this point no specific brand, grower, supplier, or distributor has been identified. Neither the CDC, FDA nor Public Health Agency of Canada found a single source for the Romaine lettuce in that outbreak, which sickened 25 and killed one on the USA side of the border.