Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Diarrhea Digest: June 9, 2009

Diarrhea Digest is an eFoodAlert feature that presents a periodic snapshot of foodborne and person-to-person gastroenteritis outbreaks from around the world.

One or twice a month, we'll survey the globe and discover what all of us have in common – a shared susceptibility to the bacteria and viruses that cause gastrointestinal disease.

Asia and Africa
  • Bangladesh, June 2 – High energy biscuits supplied to by the World Food Programme have been fingered as the source of an outbreak of food poisoning among school children in Khagrhachharhi.
  • Bangladesh, June 5 – Capsules containing vitamin A and a deworming medication triggered an episode of vomiting among 150 children approximately 2 hours after they swallowed the capsules. The children were taken to a local hospital for treatment.
  • Hong Kong, June 5Kowloon Junior School in Ho Man Tin was closed for several days on the advice of the Center for Health Protection after 41 students developed gastroenteritis. Two of the children – all of whom suffered from vomiting, diarrhea and fever – were hospitalized. The school is undergoing cleaning and disinfection while classes are suspended.
  • Kazakhstan, June 9 – Thirty residents of the Atyrau region are showing symptoms of brucellosis, after coming into contact with infected cattle. People can become infected with Brucella as a result of drinking unpasteurized milk from an infected dairy cow.
  • Sri Lanka, June 5Eheliyagoda Central College was closed temporarily after 25 students and several teachers contracted hepatitis. The source of the infection is being investigated.
  • Tanzania, June 4 – An outbreak of acute watery diarrhea – blamed on contaminated drinking water resulting from a ruptured pipe – has killed two people and sent 28 others to hospital in the western district of Kigoma.

Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands
  • Philippines, June 7 – Two people – a 14-year old girl and a 33-year old woman – have died and 28 others have been suffering from diarrhea in and around Basay town. The outbreak is blamed on a lack of sanitary toilet facilities and safe drinking water. Residents of the area are being told to boil their water.

Europe, Including Russia
  • Ukraine, June 2 – Eight students from a school district were hospitalized with food poisoning after eating at the school canteen.
  • Ukraine, June 4Salmonella left a bitter aftertaste to both a birthday celebration and a funeral meal at a café in Valkivska after 16 of the attendees were hospitalized. Victims complained of fever and diarrhea two days after eating a chicken dish that also contained a liver and fish filler (stuffing?). Authorities are investigating.
  • United Kingdom, June 5 – An East Oxford sushi bar was closed when two patrons complained of food poisoning as a result of eating at the restaurant. One of the victims was hospitalized.

Western Hemisphere
  • Costa Rica, June 5 – Some 800 residents of Grecia, Costa Rica have been stricken with gastroenteritis as a result of drinking contaminated water. More than 100 of the victims have been treated in hospital. Both Salmonella Typhimurium and E. coli have been found in the town's water supply. Local health authorities suspect that the water became infected as it traveled through an old aqueduct, which is scheduled for replacement in 2011.
  • Guatemala, June 1 – Residents of 10 municipalities in Huehuetenango have been experiencing an outbreak of diarrhea that has sickened 223 people so far. No specific source of the outbreak has been identified.
  • United States, May 28 – The Maine CDC has issued a Public Health Alert advising that the state has confirmed six cases of E. coli O157:H7 infections in Cumberland and York counties over the last month. A seventh case is under investigation. The same genetic strain has been recovered from four of the infected individuals. This same strain also has been reported elsewhere in the US. No common source of this cluster of infections has been determined so far.
  • United States, June 4 – Two kindergarten students in Jackson County, MO were confirmed to have been infected with Salmonella. Several other children also reported symptoms of salmonellosis, but were not tested for the microbe.
  • United States, June 6 – Two cases of typhoid fever (Salmonella Typhi) have been confirmed in Chattanooga, TN and a third case is considered probable. The three victims – all of them children – have recovered. Health officials are trying to determine the source of the outbreak.

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