Header graphic for print

Shigella Blog

Surveillance & Analysis on Shigella News & Outbreaks

Shigella Spike in San Joaquin

The San Joaquin County Public Health Services has seen an increase in the number of cases of Shigella in the county this year. So far, 66 people have come down with the bacteria-caused disease. Historically, the county only sees about 10 case of the disease per year.

Shigellosis is a highly infectious disease that causes stomach cramping, mild or severe diarrhea and fever. Symptoms often occur within a week after exposure, but usually within three days and usually lasts four to seven days.

The disease is the result of a bacteria that passes from improperly washed hands of one person to the mouth of another person, often through handling contaminated objects or food. The disease is especially easily passed among childcare professionals and food preparers.

Shigella Outbreak Hits 243 in 32 States

shigella-spp-300pxShigella sonnei has spread via international travelers to 32 states and Puerto Rico, US health officials say.

Between May 2014 and February 2015, a drug-resistant strain of shigella has infected 243 people across the US, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC’s findings were first published in the agency’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

The CDC found that 90 percent of cases of the shigellosis infection analyzed in Massachusetts, California, and Pennsylvania were resistant to ciprofloxacin (Cipro), the top shigellosis antibiotic in the US.

The agency found that the potent, Cipro-resistant strain was “repeatedly introduced as ill travelers returned and was then infecting other people in a series of outbreaks around the country.” Many shigella strains in the US were already considered too advanced for other drugs, including ampicillin and trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole.

The CDC added that shigellosis spreads quickly among nursing homes, “childcare facilities, homeless people and gay and bisexual men, as occurred in these outbreaks.”

“These outbreaks show a troubling trend in Shigella infections in the United States,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden in a public statement.

The CDC was first alerted to the new breed of shigella – which causes diarrhea in those infected – in December. Further investigation found that the strain was resistant to Cipro. The agency found that international travelers were largely responsible for the strain’s introduction, while other cases, including around 100 infections among the homeless population in San Francisco, were contracted by other means.

Indiana Sees More Than 1,000 Shigella Cases in 2014

In 2013, the state of Indiana reported approximately 100 cases of the gastrointestinal bacterial infection, shigellosis. This year, state health officials say that number is more than 1,000.

Every year, about 14,000 cases of shigellosis are reported in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“Shigellosis has a cyclical trend, so we would expect to see an overall increase in cases some years,” said State Health Commissioner Jerome Adams, M.D., M.P.H. “This year, we have seen a strong association with younger children, which has helped drive the outbreak and significantly increased the number of cases.”

According to the Indiana State Department of Health, shigellosis is spread from person-to-person through the fecal-oral route. The bacteria can be transferred easily among children because of their poor hand washing habits and tendency to put things in their mouths. People can also become infected by consuming food or drinks prepared by an infected person or handling or cleaning up feces.

Symptoms usually begin 24 to 72 hours after exposure and last about four to seven days without treatment; however, severe infections may require antibiotics.

Salsarita Shigella Outbreak Lawsuit – Arkansas (2014)

Salsarita’s Restaurant in the Walmart Home Office Café in Bentonville has reopened following a Shigella outbreak that made 275 sick in nine states according to the Benton County Health Department.  According to the Arkansas State Health Department dozens of employees were also ill with Shigellosis.

The Benton County Health Department conducted an inspection on June 18, shorty after people started getting sick.  Inspectors found nine violations on that inspection.  Of those nine violations, five were marked priority, meaning they were concerns that needed to be fixed fast.  Some violations included, employees not washing their hands or touching cooked food without wearing gloves.  The report said raw chicken had been dripping on bottled drinks.

On a follow-up inspection on June 23, inspectors found seven violations, some of them the same as the previous inspection.

After the outbreak, Eurest, the third-party company in charge of managing the kitchen, hired a quality assurance manager and will retrain staff on the company’s safety protocols.

Shigella:  Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Shigella outbreaks. The Shigella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Shigella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Shigella lawyers have litigated Shigella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of sources, such as tomatoes, airplane and restaurant food.

If you or a family member became ill with a Shigella infection after consuming food and you’re interested in pursuing a legal claim, contact the Marler Clark Shigella attorneys for a free case evaluation.

Zov’s Restaurant: Another Orange County Shigella Scare

Nancy Luna reports that Zov’s restaurant in Irvine was forced to shut down briefly Wednesday in the wake of a foodborne illness probe tied to four sick customers, health department officials said Thursday.

The sickened guests ate at Zov’s on Portola on three different dates between Sept. 16-22, said Deanne Thompson, a spokeswoman for the county’s Health Care Agency. All four people tested positive for shigella, an intestinal disease that triggers severe diarrhea.

Health investigators cleared Zov’s to reopen the same day after the restaurant’s owners took quick action to sanitize the restaurant and discard all ready-to-eat foods including fresh produce.

Employees, who cannot return to work until they are medically cleared by the health agency, were also given training on proper hand-washing, Thompson said.

True Food with Shigella

Nancy Luna reports with the Orange county Register that an upscale restaurant at Fashion Island that bills itself as a healthy living establishment is at the center of a suspected foodborne illness outbreak involving at least six victims, county officials said Thursday.

The sickened diners tested positive for shigella, an intestinal bacteria that triggers severe diarrhea. The “common factor” for each victim was they ate a meal at True Food Kitchen in Newport Beach on Aug. 21, 23, 24 and 25, county healthy officials said.

The county shut the restaurant Aug. 28 to investigate the outbreak. None of the victims ate the same dish, leading investigators to believe that the bacteria was spread “person to person,” said Denise Fennessy, director of Environmental Health at the county’s Health Care Agency.

Shigella Lawsuit Filed against Salsarita’s Restaurant in Wal-Mart

Wife of active duty U.S. Navy diver is one of 275 people who became ill with Shigellosis

Attorneys Bill Marler and Drew Falkenstein of Marler Clark, the nation’s only law firm dedicated to representing victims of foodborne illness, have filed a lawsuit in the Circuit Court of Benton County, Arkansas on behalf of married couple Delida Groom and James Groom. Mrs. Groom was visiting the area when she was sickened with Shigellosis after consuming food from Salsarita’s Restaurant located in the Wal-Mart Home Office Café in Bentonville, Arkansas. Case number is V 14-1029-1 in the Circuit Court of Benton County, Arkansas, Civil Division

In late June 2014, the Arkansas State Health Department announced that an outbreak of Shigella had occurred at the Wal-Mart Home Office in Bentonville, Arkansas. At or about the time of the announcement, Salsarita’s restaurant had temporarily closed its doors. The health department has stated that 275 cases of Shigellosis have occurred in nine states as part of this outbreak. After investigation, health officials indicated that Salsarita’s restaurant was the source of the outbreak. The outbreak stemmed from a few simple and preventable violations; some of which included employees not washing their hands and employees touching ready-to-eat food without wearing gloves.

In June 2014, Mrs. Groom traveled to Bentonville, Arkansas to visit her parents. While in Arkansas, on Friday, June 13, 2014, she attended a luncheon that included multiple foods from the Wal-Mart Home Office Café, including chips, salsa, and other items produced at the Salsarita’s restaurant located in the Café. The following evening, June 14, 2014, Mrs. Groom began to feel slightly fevered, light-headed, and nauseated. Over the next several days, her symptoms spiraled and included bloody diarrhea and severe gastrointestinal issues. She was later given treatment for metabolic disturbances given her immense gastrointestinal losses and hospitalized in the ICU for several days receiving critical care. Mrs. Groom developed long-term complications and continues to suffer from the effects of the Shigellosis illness.

“After thousands of cases, I am still amazed at how these outbreaks start,” said Marler. “Washing your hands and putting on gloves is not rocket science and it only takes a minute or two.”

Shigellosis is an infectious disease caused by a group of bacteria called Shigella. Most who are infected with Shigella develop diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps starting a day or two after they are exposed to the bacteria. The diarrhea is often bloody. Shigellosis usually resolves in 5 to 7 days. Persons with Shigellosis in the United States rarely require hospitalization. A severe infection with high fever may be associated with seizures in children less than 2 years old.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Shigella outbreaks. The Shigella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Shigella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Shigella lawyers have litigated Shigella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of sources, such as tomatoes, airplane and restaurant food.

Arkansas Salsarita’s Restaurant Linked to Shigella Outbreak

Salsarita’s Restaurant in the Walmart Home Office Café in Bentonville has reopened following a Shigella outbreak that made 275 sick in nine states according to the Benton County Health Department. According to the Arkansas State Health Department dozens of employees were also ill with Shigellosis.

The Benton County Health Department conducted an inspection on June 18, shorty after people started getting sick. Inspectors found nine violations on that inspection. Of those nine violations, five were marked priority, meaning they were concerns that needed to be fixed fast. Some violations included, employees not washing their hands or touching cooked food without wearing gloves. The report said raw chicken had been dripping on bottled drinks.

On a follow-up inspection on June 23, inspectors found seven violations, some of them the same as the previous inspection.

After the outbreak, Eurest, the third-party company in charge of managing the kitchen, hired a quality assurance manager and will retrain staff on the company’s safety protocols.Shigellosis is an infectious disease caused by a group of bacteria called Shigella. Most who are infected with Shigella develop diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps starting a day or two after they are exposed to the bacteria. The diarrhea is often bloody. Shigellosis usually resolves in 5 to 7 days. Persons with shigellosis in the United States rarely require hospitalization. A severe infection with high fever may be associated with seizures in children less than 2 years old.Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Shigella outbreaks. The Shigella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Shigella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Shigella lawyers have litigated Shigella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of sources, such as tomatoes, airplane and restaurant food.

 

Indiana and Michigan Report Increase in Shigella

With over 200 cases of shigellosis reported in the state and many parents in Indiana are keeping children out of the water where it’s believed many are contracting the illness.

In Michigan this summer Kalamazoo County has been the heart of the same nasty bacterial intestinal disease, and the numbers continue to grow.

“It’s all over the board. We’re at 42 confirmed or probable cases,” said Mike Phillips, disease surveillance nurse, Kalamazoo Community Health and Community Services.

An acute bacterial disease involving the intestinal tract, with symptoms often including bloody diarrhea, shigella “is really rough on an old person or a young person,” Phillips said.

Shigella bacteria are passed, when a person comes in contact with the fecal matter of an infected person. This contact can come from the hands or clothing of an infected person up to a week after the person no longer shows signs of the condition. As hand washing, and careful cleanup are methods of preventing the spread of the condition, it often affects young children who still might have trouble with basic hygiene. It is often seen in toddlers who are not fully toilet trained and can pass along to other members of the child’s family.

Salsarita’s Restaurant: 158 with Shigella after 9 Health Code Violations

According to the Arkansas State Health Department dozens of employees at Walmart home office in Bentonville are overcoming an outbreak of Shigellosis.  The Salsarita’s Restaurant at the Walmart Home Office Cafe is closed while the Arkansas Health Department works to figure out how people got sick with Shigella, a food-borne illness that causes stomach trouble.  The health department conducted an inspection last Wednesday right after people started getting sick.

Inspectors found nine violations on that inspection.  Of those nine violations, five were marked priority, meaning they were concerns that needed to be fixed fast.

Some violations included, employees not washing their hands or touching cooked food without wearing gloves.

The report said raw chicken had been dripping on bottled drinks.

A second inspection was done Monday. Inspectors found seven violations, some of them are the same.

The health department has planned a second follow-up inspection for next week.

The health department said they will be doing a follow-up inspection at the Walmart home office within the next few days.

The department also said it has confirmed 19 cases of Shigella and 139 probable cases.

Marler Clark, The Food Safety Law Firm, is the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of Shigella outbreaks. The Shigella lawyers of Marler Clark have represented thousands of victims of Shigella and other foodborne illness outbreaks and have recovered over $600 million for clients.  Marler Clark is the only law firm in the nation with a practice focused exclusively on foodborne illness litigation.  Our Shigella lawyers have litigated Shigella cases stemming from outbreaks traced to a variety of sources, such as tomatoes, airplane and restaurant food.