182 Infected with Shigella Linked to San Jose Restaurant
182 people have been struck with an intestinal disease cause by Shigella bacteria. The outbreak originated at the Mariscos San Juan No. 3 restaurant in San Jose and since then has spread to at least six counties in just over a week.
Details of the Shigella Outbreak
According to Reuters, health officials say the disease is highly contagious, and has left several hospitalized, and dozens of others are in intensive care units.
A common source is staff members or parents who don’t wash their hands well enough after changing diapers or helping toddlers with toilet training. It can also be passed in contaminated food or by drinking or swimming in contaminated water.
In this case, officials say it is possible that an infected food handler prepared the meals at the San Jose restaurant. The department is investigating all sources at this time.
There have already been two lawsuits filed, according to the Marler Clark law firm.
The restaurant has closed its doors since the outbreak and is cooperating with the investigation. The owners, however, could not be reached for comment.
Symptoms of Shigella Infection
Shigella (shigellosis) has serious affects on the body, the number one being diarrhea, which is often watery or bloody and it often accompanied by fever. It may be passed through direct contact with fecal matter, typically ingested somehow.
Children between the ages of 2 and 4 are most likely to get a Shigella infection. Mild cases may clear up within a week, and doctors will generally prescribe antibiotics.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Shigella bacteria cause some 500,000 cases of the diarrheal disease in the United States every year.