Field of Romaine Lettuce
Field of Romaine Lettuce

Health Officials Advise Residents Not to Eat Any Romaine Lettuce

Author: Public Health Department
Date: 11/21/2018 5:11:50 PM

Outbreak of E. coli Infections Linked to Romaine Lettuce


The County of San Luis Obispo Public Health Department is advising residents to avoid eating any romaine lettuce due to a current nationwide outbreak of E. coli. On November 20, 2018, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advised U.S. consumers to avoid eating any romaine lettuce, and that retailers and restaurants halt serving or selling romaine lettuce until more is known about a current outbreak of E. coli infections.

Consumers who have any type of romaine lettuce in their home should not eat it and should throw it away. If you suspect that a salad mix might contain romaine lettuce, or are unsure, you should throw it away. In addition, you should wash and sanitize any drawers or shelves in the refrigerator that might have contained romaine lettuce. A detailed description of how to manage cleaning your refrigerator may be found at https://www.cdc.gov/foodsafety/communication/clean-refrigerator-steps.html.

Contact your healthcare provider if you have diarrhea that lasts more than 3 days or is accompanied by high fever, blood in the stool, or so much vomiting that you cannot keep liquids down or are passing very little urine. Symptoms typically develop 3-4 days after eating or drinking something that contains E. coli. Antibiotics are generally not recommended for either proven or suspected E. coli O157 infections.

Thirty-two people across 11 states have been infected with the outbreak strain of E. coli O157:H7, in addition to 18 cases in Canada. California has had 10 reported cases in this outbreak. Reported illnesses started on dates ranging from October 8 to October 31, 2018. Thirteen people have been hospitalized. No deaths have been reported.

More information about this outbreak and E. coli O157:H7 is available at https://www.cdc.gov/ecoli/2018/o157h7-11-18/index.html .

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