Published Date: 2008-09-22 16:00:32
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> E. coli O157, university students - USA: (MI)
Archive Number: 20080922.2987
E. COLI O157, UNIVERSITY STUDENTS - USA: (MICHIGAN)
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Sun 21 Sep 2008
Source: The Michigan State University (MI) State News [edited]
Although the number of probable cases related to an infectious _E.
coli_ strain on campus jumped to 23 last week, investigators from the
Ingham County Health Department still have not determined its cause.
A number of students came forward to report symptoms related to an
_E. coli_ infection, including bloody diarrhea, after MSU sent out an
e-mail asking anyone possibly infected to notify the county health
department. University Physician Beth Alexander said the additional
cases were from the initial outbreak, not new infections.
"The good news is the number of cases coming in here were way, way
down," Alexander said. "Although the numbers looked alarming, that's
a result of trying to bring people in who had symptoms and evaluating them."
Six of the 23 cases have been linked to the _E. coli_ infection, and
the remaining 17 are being studied, Ingham County Health Director
Dean Sienko said. DNA results could confirm additional _E. coli_
infections as early as today [21 Sep 2008], Alexander said. Sienko
said the department's investigation has not yielded a definitive
answer as to where or why the outbreak occurred.
"We have a number of staff who are doing very extensive food history
interviews of many of the students involved," Sienko said. "We expect
to have results from that (today [21 Sep 2008]). We also expect to
get additional laboratory information."
He said the majority of infected and possibly infected students lived
in East Complex residence halls. East Complex is comprised of Akers,
Holmes, Hubbard, McDonel and Van Hoosen halls.
"We've had very few (reports) from other areas outside the East
Complex, and we've had a few students who live off campus," Sienko
said. "I can't determine at this point whether those are unrelated or
whether it's part of this. We'll need further lab confirmation to see
if any associations existed."
[Byline: Justin Harris]
Date: Sat 20 Sep 2008
Source: Top News [edited]
Federal, state and Ingham County health officials are investigating
an _E. coli_ outbreak at Michigan State University (MSU), with 19
students falling victim to strain O157:H7, a virulent, contagious,
and sometimes fatal strain of the bacterium.
Health Department, MSU, and state and federal officials began
investigating the outbreak after 10 students were treated for severe
gastrointestinal illness over the weekend. Trying to isolate possible
sources, 7 campus residents were hospitalized, of which 6 have been
released. Suffering from bloody diarrhea, a trademark and most common
symptom of strain O157:H7, lab results reveal that at least 2
students fell ill from the same source.
An alert sent out by MSU asked all students to contact appropriate
authorities if they have recently experienced gastrointestinal
illness, particularly bloody diarrhea. Responding to the alert, a
number of students contacted the Ingham County Health Department, and
9 of them are being considered potential _E. coli_ victims.
[Byline: Carina Rose]
[The seemingly focal nature of the outbreak suggests an as yet
unknown food vehicle localized to a particular dining facility on
campus located in East Lansing, Michigan.
Ingham county is in the south-central part of the lower peninsula of
the state and can be found on a map at: