WebMD News Brief

Hundreds Sickened by Parasite in Bagged Salad

bagged salad

July 27, 2020 -- An outbreak in bagged salads has sickened 641 people in 11 states, the FDA says.

The salads were made by Fresh Express at a plant in Illinois and may be contaminated with cyclospora. Fresh Express recalled bagged salads with a product code of Z178 or lower and a “best by” date through July 14. The recall includes salads with the Fresh Express label and retail store brands ALDI Little Salad Bar, Giant Eagle, Hy-Vee, Jewel-Osco Signature Farms, ShopRite Wholesome Pantry, and Walmart Marketside.

The products were sold in Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, D.C., West Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Thirty-seven people have been hospitalized. Illnesses related to the salads have been reported in Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, and Wisconsin.

An FDA investigation continues, but the agency says iceberg lettuce, carrots, and red cabbage are “items of interest” to the investigation.

The telltale symptom of cyclospora infection is a lot of foul-smelling, watery diarrhea that comes and goes. Patients often have gas and low-grade fevers or flu-like symptoms, which can last for several weeks.

People can be hospitalized for dehydration linked to prolonged diarrhea.

WebMD Health News Brief Reviewed by Brunilda Nazario, MD on July 27, 2020

Sources

Andi Shane, MD, pediatric infectious disease specialist, Emory University.

FDA.gov: “Outbreak Investigation of Cyclospora: Bagged Salads (June 2020).”

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