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E. Coli in Ground Beef Sends More than 20 People to HospitalTwo ground beef distributors were recently forced to recall their products after an E. coli outbreak that sickened 177 people in 10 states. Though no one is reported to have died, 21 people have been hospitalized since the outbreak started in March. One of the distributors is based in the Chicago area and at least one of the victims is from Illinois. Victims have reportedly eaten the contaminated beef both at home and in restaurants. A Kentucky woman has already filed a lawsuit against one of the packing companies, claiming that the contaminated ground beef caused her to suffer kidney failure and seizures.

Dangers of E. Coli

The ground beef products contained a strain of E. coli O103. Ground beef has a higher-than-average risk of E. coli contamination because bacteria from the cattleā€™s intestines can infect the meat and ground beef can contain multiple cattle, which increases the risk that one of them had E. coli. Symptoms from consuming E. coli can take three-to-four days to develop and may include:

  • Stomach cramps;
  • Diarrhea, often bloody; and
  • Vomiting.

The symptoms can last seven days. In some cases, a patient may develop a form of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome, which can be life-threatening.

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