The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has warned of an outbreak of Listeria which has made 10 persons sick across three states. The federal health agency believes that the listeria outbreak is connected with deli meats. The warning came on Friday after there were reports of sick persons sent to hospitals in New York, Massachusetts, and Florida. One death case was also recorded in Florida.
The CDC believes that the outbreak is a result of contaminated deli meat. Even though the agency is yet to identify a specific supplier or type of meat as the source of the outbreak, nine affected persons were reported to have eaten Italian-style meats such as prosciutto, mortadella, and salami from deli counters.
The victims are mostly females of an average age of 81. Though several persons may not get terribly sick as a result of Listeria, people who are over 65 years old, pregnant women, and people who have low immunity are at higher risks of falling sick.
A person having listeria infection could manifest various symptoms such as headaches, fever, muscle aches, loss of balance, and confusion. These symptoms become noticeable within 1 to 4 weeks of infection. Listeria is known to be very dangerous to the health of pregnant women. When infected by it, a pregnant woman could suffer premature delivery, miscarriage, or stillbirth. The newborn’s life could also be endangered by it.
While it continues investigations into the current outbreak, the CDC recommends that people with a high risk of being infected avoid deli meat consumption except it is well heated first with an internal temperature of at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit. It also recommends cleaning surrounding surfaces and the use of refrigerators for the storage of the meat while separating it from other foods.
There had been earlier listeria outbreaks that were connected to mushrooms, soft cheeses, and hard-boiled eggs.