FRIDAY, Aug. 16 (HealthDay News) — As U.S. health officials continue to try to track down the source of a widespread stomach bug outbreak, the number of cases continues to climb, with 576 illnesses now reported in 19 states.
According to statistics released Friday from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, at least 36 people, or 9 percent, have been hospitalized with severe cases of cyclospora infection. No deaths have been reported.
Last week, the source of the outbreak in at least two states was traced to Taylor Farms, which supplied salad mix to Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants and is the Mexican branch of Taylor Farms of Salinas, Calif.
On Tuesday, Taylor Farms de Mexico “officially informed FDA that, as of Aug. 9, 2013, the company voluntarily suspended production and shipment of any salad mix, leafy green, or salad mix components from its operations in Mexico to the United States,” according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
“To date, only the salad mix has been implicated in the outbreak of cyclosporiasis in Iowa and Nebraska,” the FDA said. The agency added it is still trying to determine whether the prepackaged salad mix was the source of infections in the other states.
States that have recorded cases of cyclospora infection include Texas (240), Iowa (153), Nebraska (86), Florida (29), Wisconsin (14), Illinois (11), Arkansas (10), New York (7), Georgia (4), Kansas (4), Missouri (4), Louisiana (3), Minnesota (2), New Jersey (2), Ohio (2), Virginia (2), California (1), Connecticut (1) and New Hampshire (1).
Meanwhile, U.S. health officials said the overall investigation continues.
Prior outbreaks of cyclospora infection have typically been caused by tainted produce, the CDC noted.
- Stomach Bug Halts Farm’s Salad Production (abcnews.go.com)
- Stomach Bug Outbreak Cases Top 500 (nlm.nih.gov)
- Cases in Stomach Bug Outbreak Continue to Climb (news.health.com)
- Mexico plant stops salad production amid cyclospora outbreak (cbsnews.com)