PHOENIX, ARIZONA: Arizona has the highest number of salmonella cases due to a nationwide recall of melons. In ongoing investigations by federal and state agencies, seven people in Arizona have reportedly fallen ill.
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has advised against consuming, selling or serving the recently recalled melon products. Some of these recalled products were available at retail locations in Arizona.
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Arizona reports cases related to melon recall
The FDA and CDC are currently investigating a salmonella outbreak that has reportedly affected at least 43 people in 15 states and resulted in the hospitalization of 17 people, the agency announced Friday.
Arizona has the highest number of cases, with seven people sickened as of Friday, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The number of these people who required hospitalization remains undisclosed, according to News Break.
In an attempt to trace the source of the outbreak, state and local public health officials surveyed the eating habits of affected people in the week leading up to their illness. Of the 29 people surveyed, 15 reported consuming cantaloupe, according to the CDC.
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Three brands that distribute their products in several states in the United States and Canada recently recalled fresh cantaloupe and pineapple products due to potential salmonella contamination.
Sophia Producer LLC, doing business as Trufresh, issued a recall on November 15 for all sizes of fresh melon labeled “Malicita.” These fruits were sold from October 16 to October 23.
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Aldi has announced a recall of cantaloupe, cut melon and pineapple shoots packaged in clamshells with expiration dates of October 27-31.
Vinyard Fruit and Vegetable Company voluntarily recalled all fresh cut cantaloupe products last week.
The recall includes melon pieces and cubes, fruit mixes, melon mixes and fruit cups containing melons.
Most of these products are labeled “Vineyard” and some are labeled “Fresh.” These products were distributed in Oklahoma from October 30 to November 10.
According to the FDA, the recalled products were sold at retail stores in several states, including Arizona, California, Maryland, New Jersey, Tennessee, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, Texas, Florida, and Canada. .
The FDA cautioned that this list may not be comprehensive because the recalled fruit products may have been further distributed to consumers.
CDC warns of salmonella outbreak
The earliest case linked to the outbreak was reported on Oct. 17, with only one case reported, according to the CDC. In the following days, the daily number of cases fluctuated between one and two.
A surge in cases was observed from October 24 to November 1, with the daily number of cases ranging from one to seven. The highest number of cases reported in one day was seven, which occurred on both October 24 and 25.
The date of the first documented case in Arizona remains unknown.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) noted that recent illnesses are not yet being reported due to the typical three to four week period required to determine whether a person’s illness is part of an outbreak.
They also said that the actual number of people affected by this outbreak is likely much higher than reported. This is because many people recover without seeking medical attention and may therefore not be tested for salmonella.
What is salmonella?
Salmonella is an organism that can cause severe and sometimes life-threatening infections, especially in children under 5 years of age, older adults and people with weakened immune systems, according to the FDA.
What are the symptoms of salmonella?
People usually get sick within 12 to 72 hours of eating food contaminated with salmonella.
Symptoms include diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps. In more severe cases, people may experience high fever, aches, headaches, lethargy, rash, and blood in the urine or stool.
The illness usually lasts four to seven days, and most people recover without needing medical attention.
According to FSN, older adults, children, pregnant women and people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, are at higher risk of developing severe illness and potentially life-threatening conditions.
Interestingly, some people can become infected without showing any symptoms. However, they can still transmit the infection to others.
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