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Hepatitis A Outbreak is Linked to Frozen Strawberries by the FDA

 Posted on November 13, 2016 in Food Poisoning

Hepatitis A Outbreak is Linked to Frozen Strawberries by the FDA

The United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have linked a recent outbreak of Hepatitis A to frozen strawberries imported to the country by the International Company for Agricultural Production and Processing (ICAPP). The strawberries were received at five distribution centers throughout the nation and sold under various regional brand names. In October 2016, ICAPP recalled the strawberries, but by then, they might have reached consumers and could have been part of food service operations as late as early November 2016. As of late October 2016, 130 people reported suffering from Hepatitis A after possibly consuming the strawberries.

Hepatitis A, like many other types of food poisoning, can have serious complications for a victim, such as reduced liver function. There is a vaccine for Hepatitis A that can protect a patient for up to one year.

Symptoms of Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A affects the liver. Its symptoms include the following:

  • Dark urine;
  • Jaundice;
  • Fatigue;
  • Nausea and vomiting; and
  • Fever.

There is no medical treatment available for individuals who have developed Hepatitis A. Those affected by this condition should get plenty of rest and hydration. Drinking alcohol and taking over-the-counter medications can prolong an individual's recovery. In most cases, serious complications do not arise. When a patient's condition does not improve or if it becomes worse, he or she should seek medical attention.

How is Hepatitis A Transmitted?

Hepatitis A is contagious, but generally, casual contact such as contact between classmates or colleagues is not enough for the virus to spread from one person to another. Contact with infected individuals with poor hygiene can result in transmission. Generally, it is transmitted through feces, so daycare workers and others who change young children's diapers are at risk.

Others who are at risk of contracting Hepatitis A are individuals who do not have access to clean water, individuals whose homes or other settings have poor sanitation, those who travel to or through areas suffering from a Hepatitis A outbreak, and individuals who engage in sexual relations with infected partners.

You can reduce your chance of contracting Hepatitis A by thoroughly washing your hands after using the bathroom and before you eat. Consider getting vaccinated against Hepatitis A, but know that not everybody can be vaccinated. Pregnant women, individuals who are allergic to neomycin, and those who have had severe reactions to vaccines in the past should not receive the Hepatitis A vaccine.

Work with an Experienced Itasca Food Poisoning Attorney

If you or your child experience the symptoms of Hepatitis A or any other type of food poisoning, take the steps discussed above to ensure a full, timely recovery. If the infection causes you to suffer substantial damages, though, consider working with an experienced personal injury lawyer to pursue a food poisoning claim. Contact our team at Newland & Newland, LLP today to set up your initial legal consultation with us. We serve clients in the Arlington Heights, Palatine, Rolling Meadows, Libertyville, Mundelein, Buffalo Grove, Schaumburg, Elk Grove, and Itasca areas.

(image courtesy of Bernal Saborio from Costa Rica)

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