More than 200 people have been sickened by a norovirus outbreak linked to raw Texas oysters, prompting a recall by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. open an investigation in mollusks.
The CDC announced Thursday that it is working in partnership with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), DSHS, and other public health partners to find the cause of the outbreak. DSHS issued a recall for affected oysters, and the FDA shared a warning.
The contaminated oysters were harvested in the southeastern part of Galveston Bay from November 17 to December 7, DSHS reported. said. The recall includes shelled and shelled oysters. The area from which the oysters originated was closed for harvesting on December 8, after reports of illness began coming in from parts of Texas and Florida.
As of Thursday, 211 people in states including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee and Texas had reported illness caused by oysters.
No hospitalizations or deaths related to the outbreak have been reported.
Norovirus is the leading cause of foodborne illness in the United States, According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the condition can cause symptoms including diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, and stomach pain, usually within 12 to 48 hours of exposure. Symptoms can last one to three days, but young children, the elderly, and people with compromised immune systems can have more serious illness.
Anyone who eats raw shellfish, such as oysters, is at risk of contracting norovirus: To prevent food poisoning from oysters, the CDC recommends cooking them to an internal temperature of at least 145 degrees Fahrenheit.
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