Americans should refrain from eating any romaine lettuce the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned on Tuesday.
The following alert comes just two days before Thanksgiving as following a new E. coli outbreak .
The CC also state that consumers should throw out any romaine lettuce, and retailers and restaurants should not sell or serve it.
At least 32 people in 11 states have become sick from the same strain of E. coli in the outbreak.
The illnesses began in October and at least 13 people have hospitalised since including one with a kind of kidney failure, according to the CDC said.
Thankfully no fatalities have been reported, and no recalls have been issued.
U.S. consumers should avoid all types of romaine lettuce including salad mixes if they are unsure whether it includes romaine, according to the CDC.
The agency also asks Americans to clean refrigerators where the lettuce was being stored.
In a statement the CC said, ”Consumers who have any type of romaine lettuce in their home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.”
No common source of the contaminated lettuce has been identified, the CDC said, but federal health officials have begun investigating.
According to the CDC, the strain of E. coli had “same DNA fingerprint” as an outbreak tied to leafy greens in the United States and romaine in Canada late last year.
The outbreak caused a fatality for one person and infected 25 in 15 states.
The outbreak however is not related to an E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce from earlier this year – which took five people’s lives and sickened 210 in 36 states – the CDC said.
“This isn’t the first romaine outbreak we have seen in the recent past, and we will continue to take steps to identify the root causes of these events and take action to prevent future outbreaks,” U.S. Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb said.
Additionally, 18 people in the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec have also been sickened by the same E. coli strain.
In California ten cases have been reported which is the state with the highest number of sick people.
Seven were identified in Michigan. Other states that reported cases are Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and Wisconsin.
“Ill people reported eating different types of romaine lettuce in several restaurants and at home,” health officials said.
People will get sick an average of three to four days after eating the contaminated lettuce, the agency added.
Symptoms include “severe stomach cramps, diarrhea (often bloody), and vomiting,”among others, but most people who have fallen ill get better within a week, according to the CDC.
Up to 10 percent of patients can develop hemolytic uremic syndrome, though, the CDC said. The “potentially life-threatening complication” can lead to kidney failure.
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