On December 21, 2015, the CDC once again updated the outbreak associated with Chipotle restaurants in the Pacific Northwest. One additional case of illness was reported in Pennsylvania, bringing the total to 53 cases. There have been 9 states affected with this outbreak, including California with 3 cases, Illinois with 1 case, Maryland with 1 case, Minnesota with 2 cases, New York with 1 case, Ohio with 3 cases, Oregon with 13 cases, Pennsylvania with 2 cases, and Washington with 27 cases. Twenty people, or about 38% of the cases, needed to be hospitalized because of their illnesses. There have not been any reports of HUS, and no deaths have been reported. The CDC has also reported that the amount of cases reported as a result of the outbreak has dropped dramatically since the peak of the outbreak in October.
Not only is there one more case of E. coli in the original outbreak, but the CDC is investigating another string of E. coli cases in the Midwest. This outbreak has a different strain of E. coli O26 linked to it. This strain is rarer than the strain in the other outbreak. A total of 5 illnesses have been linked to this outbreak. Oklahoma has reported 3 illnesses, while North Dakota and Kansas both have reported 1 case of illness. These cases had onset dates between November 18 and November 26. Every person affected by the outbreak reported eating at Chipotle in the week prior to getting sick.
E. coli is a family of bacteria that is found in the intestines of many animals. Some strains of the bacteria can cause infection in humans. In the Chipotle outbreaks, strains of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O26 (STEC O26) have been revealed as the source of the illnesses. Symptoms can appear between 3 and 10 days after infection, and will include vomiting, bloody diarrhea, and abdominal cramping. E. coli infections can be very serious. The infection may cause a complication called hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). HUS damages red blood cells, which in turn can cause kidney damage or failure. If you or a loved one begins to show the symptoms of E. coli poisoning, contact a medical professional.
If you or a loved one suspects you are infected with E. coli as a result of consuming Chipotle, seek medical attention immediately. Even if your condition is not life-threatening, blood and stool samples may be necessary to establish the source of your illness. Contact the food poisoning lawyers at the Merman Law Firm for competent, compassionate representation. Our team of e. coli lawyers are here to help.