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Enoki mushrooms linked to listeria outbreak in two states: public health officials

Enoki mushrooms are linked to an outbreak of Listeria in two states.

The Listeria monocytogenes infections sparked a collaborative investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and public health and regulatory officials.

At least two people, one in Nevada and one in Michigan, have been infected with the strain since November 15 and have been hospitalized, although the CDC says the true number of people infected is likely higher. “That’s because some people recover without medical care and aren’t tested for Listeria,” the CDC noted in its report.

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“In addition, recent illnesses may not yet be reported, as it typically takes three to four weeks to determine if a sick person is part of an outbreak,” the CDC also noted.

Epidemiological and laboratory data collected from samples of sick people during the period from October 5 to October 21. 8, 2022, confirmed that enoki mushrooms contaminated with Listeria make people sick. People who got sick said they ate enoki mushrooms or ate at restaurants that offered dishes containing enoki mushrooms, according to Fox 17.

Investigators are working to identify specific brands of long-stemmed white mushrooms typically used in Asian cuisines, such as soups and stir-fries, that may be linked to these illnesses.

One brand, Green Day Produce, has recalled its packages of enoki mushrooms sold between September and October due to possible Listeria monocytogenes contamination.

It’s the bacteria that causes Listeria infections, according to a report on the FDA’s website.

Listeria poses a threat to pregnant women, newborns, and the elderly or immunocompromised.

The enoki mushrooms were packaged in 7.05-ounce clear plastic and distributed nationwide to distributors and retail stores, according to the statement released by the FDA.

Consumers are asked to return the items for a full refund, the website said.

Fresh enoki mushrooms are featured here.
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Listeria poses a threat to pregnant women, newborns, and the elderly or immunocompromised.

These are the people most at risk of complications, according to board-certified emergency physician Dr. Fred Davis, associate director of emergency medicine at Northwell Health in Long Island, New York.

“In these [individuals] who are at risk, it can lead to an overwhelming infection that is considered sepsis or meningitis that can lead to death,” Dr. Davis said.

“Symptoms usually resolve with minimal intervention as long as one can stay hydrated.”

He also said it could lead to complications during pregnancy.

Davis noted, however, that people with normal immune systems rarely develop invasive infections.

“In most people, the common symptoms of a Listeria infection may simply be diarrhea, but it can also include symptoms similar to many viral illnesses such as fever, body aches, nausea and vomiting,” Davis also said.

“Symptoms usually resolve with minimal intervention as long as one can stay hydrated.”

Dr. Aaron E. Glatt, chief of infectious diseases and hospital epidemiologist at Mount Sinai South Nassau Hospital in Long Island, New York, told Fox News Digital that it’s important to seek medical treatment as soon as possible if you think you have a listeria infection.

“Listeria is a treatable infection in most cases, and if diagnosed early and correctly, it can be successfully treated with available antibiotics,” he said.

Two people were recently reportedly hospitalized with Listeria infections linked to enoki mushrooms.  The CDC says the number of people affected is likely higher.  Listeria is treatable in most cases, an expert has said.

Two people were recently reportedly hospitalized with Listeria infections linked to enoki mushrooms. The CDC says the number of people affected is likely higher. Listeria is treatable in most cases, an expert has said.
(Stock)

The CDC has recommended that people call their health care provider immediately if they experience symptoms of Listeria disease after eating enoki mushrooms.

Some symptoms include headaches, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and seizures, in addition to fever and muscle aches in those who are not pregnant, the CDC said.

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Pregnant women typically suffer from fever, fatigue and muscle aches, the agency also said.

Listeria can cause pregnancy loss or premature birth and serious illness or death in newborns, the CDC also said.

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The agency advised pregnant women, those with weakened immune systems, or those aged 65 or older not to eat raw enoki mushrooms.

The CDC has also suggested restaurants avoid serving raw enoki mushrooms and cook enoki mushrooms thoroughly to kill any foodborne germs.


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