Attorney Fred Pritzker and his Bad Bug Law Team are investigating an outbreak of E. coli infections in Humboldt County, California. Since July of this year, 4 people from Humboldt County have been sickened by E. coli bacteria with the same genetic fingerprint, as determined with pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE).
The Humboldt County Department of Health and Human Services and the California Department of Public Health have not yet found the source of the illnesses.
This outbreak is unusual in that the illnesses occurred in July, August and October. Because the time between illnesses is so long and there are only 4 victims, it makes finding the source of the illnesses difficult.
“It is important that California health officials stay on this case until the source is found,” said Fred, who recently won $4.5 million for a woman who got an E. coli infection from contaminated beef and then developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS). “It is possible that people are still at risk from whatever caused these illnesses.”
“In most cases where the illnesses are spread out like this, the cause is food that has been frozen,” said Pritzker. “Although contact with cows, goats and even deer can transmit E. coli, it is unlikely that animal contact is the problem here.”
Humboldt County has contacted local medical providers, asking them to identify any cases of bloody diarrhea and to send those lab samples to the county for testing. Health officials are thinking that if they identify more cases, they will have more people to interview, increasing the chances of finding the “smoking gun”.
Common symptoms of E. coli infection include bloody diarrhea, severe abdominal cramping, nausea and vomiting. Three of the Humboldt County cases progressed to hemolytic uremic syndrome, a serious complication of E. coli infection characterized by kidney failure.
Attorney Fred Pritzker has won millions for E. coli and HUS victims. He is nationally recognized and has spoken at Harvard Law School, Cornell and other institutions about food litigation. You can contact Fred or another E. coli lawyer at our law firm for a free consultation about an E. coli lawsuit at 1-888-377-8900 (toll free) or by submitting our free consultation form (click here now).