Romaine Lettuce Sickens People in 4 States

ATLANTA, May 13 (UPI) — Thirty confirmed or probable cases of illness in four states have been tallied in an investigation of tainted romaine lettuce, U.S. health officials say.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta said on its Web site Wednesday 23 confirmed cases and seven probable instances of E. coli had been recorded in Michigan, New York, Ohio and Tennessee since March 1. The victims, 12 of whom were hospitalized, were between the ages of 13 and 31 and two-thirds of them were male, the agency said.

CDC officials said there had been 10 confirmed and three probable cases in New York, eight confirmed and one probable in Ohio, four confirmed and three probable in New York and one confirmed in Tennessee.

None of the patients had died but three developed a type of kidney failure known as hemolytic-uremic syndrome.

CDC said “multiple lines of evidence” linked the outbreak to shredded romaine lettuce from a single processing center. The processing company and another firm that received lettuce from the same farm in the Yuma, Ariz., area have issued recalls.

Federal and state health officials have previously said the tainted romaine lettuce was distributed by Freshway Foods Inc. of Sidney, Ohio.

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