The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced today that 32 people from 11 states (CA, CT, IL, MA, MD, MI, NH, NJ, NY, OH, WI) have been reported infected with a strain of Shiga toxin-producing E. coli O157:H7. Illnesses started on dates ranging from October 8th to October 31st. Of those, 13 were hospitalized, including one person who developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure. No deaths have been reported.
The Public Health Agency of Canada has identified 18 ill people infected with the same DNA fingerprint of E. coli O157:H7 bacteria in two Canadian provinces: Ontario and Quebec.
Epidemiologic evidence from the United States and Canada indicates that romaine lettuce is a likely source of the outbreak.
Ill people in this outbreak were infected with E. coli bacteria with the same DNA fingerprint as the E. coli strain isolated from ill people in a 2017 outbreak linked to leafy greens in the United States and to romaine lettuce in Canada. The current outbreak is not related to a recent multistate outbreak of E. coli O157:H7 infections linked to romaine lettuce.
CDC is advising consumers not eat to any romaine lettuce because no common grower, supplier, distributor or brand of romaine lettuce has been identified.
Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any romaine lettuce, including salads and salad mixes containing romaine according to the CDC.
CDC says the investigation is ongoing they will provide more information as it becomes available.