Published Date: 2011-10-27 12:07:21
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> E. coli VTEC - USA (02): (NC) poss. fair link
Archive Number: 20111027.3193
E. COLI VTEC - USA (02): (NORTH CAROLINA) POSSIBLE FAIR LINK
A ProMED-mail post
ProMED-mail is a program of the
International Society for Infectious Diseases
Date: Wed 26 Oct 2011
Source: WRAL [summ., edited]
The Wake County health department said Wed 26 Oct 2011, that they have
confirmed 2 additional cases of _E. coli_ infection in an outbreak
that has sent 3 children to intensive care units at area hospitals.
Ti date, 7 children and 2 adults have been infected and 8 of them
attended the North Carolina State Fair, Sue Lynn Ledford, community
health director for Wake County, said. Those affected range in age
from 2 months to 62 years old.
The source of their illness is not yet known, and Ledford emphasized
that a visit to the fair is just one shared characteristic among those
that got ill. Ledford said it could take several days to pinpoint the
source of the outbreak.
"It's like a puzzle, and you take all the different pieces of the
puzzle, put them together, and then you come up with what is a
conclusive finding," she said, adding that health officials are still
at the very early stages of their investigation.
Five of the 9 were hospitalized due to their illness. 3 children
remain in intensive care, and one boy, whose name was not released, is
on dialysis at Duke University Hospital in Durham. Both of his kidneys
are failing due to the infection.
Ledford said the county is working closely with state health officials
to determine whether the cases are related and whether there are more
cases in North Carolina. The 8th and 9th confirmed cases were from
outside Wake County, an infected adult in Johnston County and an
infected child in Cleveland County.
In 2004, more than 108 people reported having _E. coli_ [O157]
infection that was linked to a petting zoo at the State Fair. State
health officials confirmed 43 of those cases.
[Byline: Stacy Davis, Adam Owens]
[The serotype of the outbreak strain (or strains) has not been
reported and it seems clear that the enterohemorrhagic pathotype is at
the bottom of this. Even if the link to the State Fair is clear, the
source of the pathogen does not necessarily need to be direct animal
contact since a food vehicle is possible, such as undercooked
hamburger. - Mod.LL]
[The state of North Carolina can be located on the
HealthMap/ProMED-mail interactive map at
http://healthmap.org/r/1nkC. A North Carolina county map can be seen