Salmonella Outbreak: Sushi Suspected as Source

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An outbreak of an unusual strain of salmonella called Salmonella Bareilly has hit 19 states and the District of Columbia, infecting 90 people since late January, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The outbreak was made public on Tuesday when an internal memo was inadvertently sent to everyone at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), according to agency spokesperson Curtis Allen. According to the memo, the source of the outbreak could be sushi, “with spicy tuna roll sushi highly suspect,” the Wall Street Journal reports, but Allen said the FDA is not yet certain of the origins of the infection.

Health officials are still conducting interviews with those who have fallen ill to see what they had recently eaten. “On initial interviews, many of the ill persons reported consuming sushi, sashimi or similar foods in a variety of locations in the week before becoming ill,” CDC spokeswoman Lola Russell told CNN.

No deaths have been reported, but some people have been hospitalized. The FDA still cannot confirm which states have infected patients or how many, Allen told the Journal. Until further notified by the CDC, the public does not need to avoid any particular food or restaurant, health officials said

According to the CDC, salmonella can cause diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The infection typically lasts 4 to 7 days, and most people are able to recover without treatment. However, some symptoms may be severe, and patients may need to be hospitalized.