August 14, 2007: FDA Warning About Vibrio Contaminated Oysters

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is warning consumers not to eat raw oysters harvested from a portion of the southern tip of Hood Canal in Washington, following an outbreak of foodborne illness...

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If you or a family member has suffered from food poisoning,
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caused by a bacterium known as Vibrio parahaemolyticus.

The FDA reports that oysters harvested from “growing area 6” in Hood Canal beginning on July 3, 2007, have caused at least six people in California and Washington to become ill. Additional reports of illness in other states are being investigated. Raw oysters were distributed to California, Florida, Hawaii, Idaho, New York, Oregon, Washington, British Columbia (Canada), Hong Kong, Malaysia, and Singapore.

Symptoms of vibriosis, or Vibrio-associated gastroenteritis, include watery diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea, vomiting, headache, fever, and chills. Symptoms usually occur 4 to 96 hours after ingesting the organism, with an average of 15 hours. Individuals who believe they have experienced these symptoms after consuming raw oysters should consult their healthcare provider and contact their local health department. Severe disease is rare and occurs most commonly in people with weakened immune systems, including those affected by AIDS; chronic alcohol abuse; liver, stomach, or blood disorders; cancer; diabetes; or kidney disease.

The Washington State Department of Health has closed the growing area associated with the outbreak and has asked commercial oyster harvesters and dealers who obtained oysters from this area to recall them. Consumers who have recently purchased oysters should check with the place of purchase and ask if they were harvested from the affected growing area.

The Law Firm of Eric H. Weinberg is currently assisting individuals who believe they are part of the current Vibrio outbreak. Our firm also represents victims of other food poisoning outbreaks throughout the county. If you or a loved one has been the victim of Vibrio parahaemolyticus food poisoning, and you have a question about your legal rights, please fill out a case evaluation form or call us toll free at 1-877-934-6274.

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