CDC investigation update of the multistate outbreak of E. Coli infections linked to chopped romaine lettuce

The following update was released by the CDC moments ago regarding the recent E. Coli concerns surrounding chopped romaine lettuce.


  • Since the last update on April 13, 2018, 18 more ill people have been added to this investigation, bringing the total number to 53.
  • Thirty-one people out of 48 with available information (65%) have been hospitalized, including five who developed a type of kidney failure called hemolytic uremic syndrome. This is a higher hospitalization rate than usual for E. coli O157:H7 infections, which is normally around 30%. Health officials are working to determine why this strain is causing a higher percentage of hospitalizations.
  • No deaths have been reported.
  • Five more states have reported ill people: Alaska, Arizona, California, Louisiana, and Montana.
  • The latest illness was reported April 6, 2018.

CDC’s advice remains the same:

  • Information collected to date indicates that chopped romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region could be contaminated with E. coli O157:H7 and could make people sick.
  • No common grower, supplier, distributor, or brand has been identified at this time.
  • People who have store-bought chopped romaine lettuce at home, including organic romaine, salads and salad mixes containing chopped romaine lettuce, should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.
  • If you do not know if the lettuce is romaine, do not eat it and throw it away.
  • Before buying romaine lettuce at a grocery store or eating it at a restaurant, confirm that it is not chopped romaine lettuce from the Yuma growing region. If you cannot confirm the source of the lettuce, do not buy or eat it.
  • Restaurants and retailers should not serve or sell any chopped romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region. Ask your suppliers about the source of their chopped romaine lettuce.
  • People get sick from Shiga toxin-producing E. coli an average of 3 to 4 days after swallowing the germ. Most people get diarrhea (often bloody), severe stomach cramps and vomiting.
  • Most people recover within a week, but some illnesses can last longer and be more severe.
  • Talk to your doctor if you have symptoms of an E. coli infection and report your illness to your local health department.
  • This investigation is ongoing, including work to identify the source of the romaine lettuce.
  • CDC will provide more information as it becomes available.



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