Health Highlights: Nov. 5, 201011/05/10
Here are some of the latest health and medical news
developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
Costco Cheese Implicated in E. Coli Outbreak: FDA
Gouda cheese sold at Costco stores has been linked to an E. coli
outbreak in which 25 people have become ill, says the U.S. Food and
The Bravo Farms Dutch Style Raw Milk Gouda Cheese was offered
for sale and in-store tasting at Costco stores in Arizona,
California, Colorado, New Mexico and Nevada between October 5 and
Consumers with the cheese (Costco item 40654) should dispose of
it in a closed plastic bag and place it in a sealed trash can, the
FDA recommended. Costco is also offering refunds to people who
return the cheese.
Bloody diarrhea, stomach cramps and dehydration are among the
symptoms of E. coli. In extreme cases, patients can suffer kidney
failure. The FDA said people who believe they have E. coli symptoms
should contact a health care provider,
Britax Recalls 23,000 Infant Car Seats
About 23,000 infant care seats that may have faulty harness
clips are being recalled by Britax Child Safety Inc. of Charlotte,
The clip on the chest of car seats can break loose and pose a
laceration or choking hazard, says the U.S. Consumer Product Safety
Associated Press reported.
So far, Britax has received three reports of cuts and scratches
and one report of a child placing a broken clip in his mouth.
The Chinese-made seats were sold across the U.S. and on the
Britax website from June 2009 to October 2010, the
Consumers can get a free repair kit by calling Britax at
Did U.N. Peacekeepers Trigger Haiti Cholera Outbreak?
The cholera outbreak in Haiti that has killed at least 442
people may have been caused by United Nations peacekeepers,
according to experts.
The outbreak involves a strain of cholera that matches strains
found in South Asia, says the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention. But the CDC, the United Nations and the World Health
Organization claim it's not possible to pinpoint the source of the
outbreak and further attempts to do so would harm efforts to combat
the outbreak, the
Associated Press reported.
But experts say determining the source of the outbreak is
possible and important in order to prevent future deaths.
The strain of cholera in the Haiti outbreak is a new, virulent
strain previously not seen in the Western Hemisphere, according to
cholera expert John Mekalanos, chairman of the microbiology
department at Harvard University.
Evidence suggests that Nepalese soldiers with the U.N.
peacekeeping force brought the strain with them when they arrived
in Haiti in early October, Mekalanos told the
"The organism that is causing the disease is very uncharacteristic of (Haiti and the Caribbean), and is quite characteristic of the region from where the soldiers in the base came," Mekalanos explained. "I don't see there is any way to avoid the conclusion that an unfortunate and presumably accidental introduction of the organism occurred."
Listeria Found in Texas Food Plant: FDA
A Texas food-processing plant has tested positive for bacteria
linked to listeriosis-related illnesses, including four deaths, the
U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday.
The SanGar Fresh Cut Produce plant in San Antonio was ordered
closed Oct. 20 by state health officials and the company was told
to recall all products shipped from the plant since January,
Health authorities took the action after state health laboratory
Listeria monocytogenes in chopped celery at the plant. The
bacteria can cause severe illness.
The FDA inspected the plant on Oct. 26 and found the same
bacteria in processed celery and in a number of locations
throughout the plant. The FDA said the listeria it found "matches
the DNA fingerprint of the clinical cases of listeriosis reported
by the Texas Department of State Health Services,"
Tests conducted by an independent lab hired by SanGar came back
negative for listeria, said a lawyer for the company.
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