Barf Blog - January 17, Doug Powell
Director of South Eastern Sydney Public Heath Unit, Professor Mark Ferson said the 4 patients with bloody diarrhea caused by Shiga-toxin producing E. coli (STEC) KennyBanner2bacteria infection were reported yesterday in patients from the Sutherland/St George region.
Patients reported onset of diarrhea between 6 and 10 January. All were admitted to hospital and are recovering.
The South Eastern Sydney Public Health Unit immediately initiated an epidemiological investigation, conducting detailed interviews with cases about a range of risk factors for infection.
Today investigators identified that the common risk was that all 4 cases reported eating food from Kenny’s Kebabs at Miranda Fair between 4th and 8th January 2013. No other common risk factors were identified.
NSW Food Authority today attended Kenny’s Kebabs to undertake an investigation and identified a number of concerns associated with food handling and preparation. As a result the inspection of the premises the NSW Food Authority has issued a Prohibition Order which prevents the business from trading until further notice.
Results from samples taken during testing are yet to be finalised.
Professor Ferson said that investigations were continuing in regard to which particular food may have been contaminated at the Kebab shop, but it is likely that there will be more cases so it’s important to seek medical attention if you have these symptoms.
FoodSafety.gov explain this type of strain is the worst type of E. coli, known as E. coli O157:H7, causes bloody diarrhea and can sometimes cause kidney failure and even death. E. coli O157:H7 makes a toxin called Shiga toxin. One severe complication associated with E. coli infection is hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). The infection produces toxic substances that destroy red blood cells, causing kidney injury. HUS can require intensive care, kidney dialysis, and transfusions.
How Can I Prevent It?