Salmonella Cases From Cantaloupes Have Doubled

( – On Dec. 7, U.S. health officials announced that a salmonella outbreak tied to tainted cantaloupes had expanded. Two brands of cantaloupes, Malichita and Rudy, are confirmed to be linked to the outbreak.

Recalls for the two brands and pre-cut cantaloupes sold at various stores across the United States were issued. All recalls for cantaloupe are on the recall website of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Officials recommend throwing out recalled fruit or returnit it to the store for a refund. In addition, they say consumers should wash anything the fruit has come in contact with using hot, soapy water or a dishwasher.

Though those two brands are the only two linked to the outbreak, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is warning that people not to eat any cantaloupe if the brand being served or sold is unknown.

In a statement, the CDC said an additional 113 were infected in four more states, bringing the total cases to 230 people in 38 states. In the United States, three deaths have been reported from the outbreak. Canadian health officials reported 129 cases tied to the outbreak, including 44 hospitalizations and five deaths.

The CDC noted that this salmonella outbreak has a particularly severe illness associated with it. Over half of the people affected by the salmonella outbreak have been hospitalized, with the very old and young appearing to be especially susceptible. The CDC stated that 24 people residing in nursing homes and 23 children are among those to have fallen ill.

The salmonella outbreak was first reported Nov. 14. The actual number of people affected by the outbreak is unknown as many people do not require medical attention, and are not tested for salmonella, according to the CDC.

Salmonella causes symptoms such as diarrhea, fever and stomach cramps. In most cases, symptoms begin six hours to six days after contaminated food is eaten. Most people who eat food infected with salmonella recover without treatment after 4 to 7 days.

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