IL affected in ground beef recall after growing E. coli outbreak

CDC: At least 156 people in 10 states sickened by E. coli linked to ground beef

E. coli outbreak linked to ground beef spreads to 10 states, sickens 156, CDC reports

Health officials say ground beef is the likely source of a food poisoning outbreak that has sickened 156 people. Those infected range in age from younger than 1 to 83 years old, with a median age of 19.

The outbreak has now expanded to 10 states: Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, Indiana, Illinois, Mississippi, Minnesota. Fifty percent of them are female.

No deaths have been reported, but 20 people have been hospitalized for treatment.

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In the epidemiologic investigation, interviews with 114 sick people found that 92 patients (81%) had eaten ground beef, a significantly higher percentage than results from a survey of healthy people found.

A Georgia company is recalling over 113,000 pounds of ground beef after receiving reports that it might be contaminated with a strain of E. coli that could cause significant illnesses.

The CDC is now conducting investigations into the source of the contaminated beef.

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K2D recalled the ground beef, which had been on the dates March 26, March 29, April 2, April 5, April 10, and April 12, after some of the product tested positive for E. coli O103.

The ground beef involved in the recall was sent to two distributors in Florida and Georgia, and from there it was shipped to various restaurants. More testing is under way to determine if the recalled ground beef is related to the outbreak. The recall applies to two 24-lb vacuum-packed packages in cardboard boxes containing "ground beef puck" with use through dates ranging from April 14 through April 30. Orange, Fla. and Norcross, Ga.

The products subject to recall bear establishment number "EST". It usually goes away in five to seven days, but may be life-threatening in some cases. An E. coli O103 infection is more hard to diagnose than the more common E. coli O157:H7 infection because most clinical labs do not test for non-O157 Shiga toxin-producing E. coli infections.

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