The Parasite Cyclospora Spread Massively in Illinois After Eating Salads at Mcdonald's
ILLINOIS — July 13, 2018
The Illinois and Iowa health Departments of Public Health are investigating outbreaks of a parasite that causes intestinal illness and might be linked to McDonald's salad.
On the eve at least 20 people were hospitalized in Illinois hospitals with acute food poisoning. They all were recorded of cyclosporiasis, an infection caused by the parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis, that started in mid-May. It causes intestinal illness as a result of consuming contaminated food or water.
According to medicals, symptoms of this infection include diarrhea, loss of appetite and weight, cramping, bloating, gas, nausea (vomiting is less common than diarrhea), fatigue, and fever. The Iowa Department of Health has noted a similar increase in cases.
The illness can last from a few days to a few months and patients might feel better, then get worse again. Patients can be treated with antibiotics.
"The initial investigation indicates a link to consumption of McDonald’s salads produced for McDonald’s restaurants. Approximately one-fourth of Illinois cases reported eating salads from McDonald’s in the days before they became ill." said in an Illinois Health Department statement.
As for fast food restaurant, it representatives said that they have been in contact with public health authorities from Iowa and Illinois about an increase in Cyclospora infections in those states and they have been known about situations.
"Out of an abundance of caution, we decided to voluntarily stop selling salads at impacted restaurants until we can switch to another lettuce blend supplier. McDonald’s is committed to the highest standards of food safety and quality control. We are closely monitoring this situation and cooperating with state and federal public health authorities as they further investigate." said McDonald’s representative.
Earlier a fatal outbreak of E. coli earlier this year linked to Romaine lettuce that infected 210 people in 36 states and resulted in five deaths.
According to the Illinois Health Department, McDonald’s is in the process of removing its salads from restaurants and distribution centers and is restocking them with salads from other suppliers.
The parasite is also allegedly spreading in Texas, although officials have not yet identified what's making people sick there.