Oregonâ€™s Douglas County Health officials announced there are 17 confirmed cases of Salmonella poisoning linked to the Los Dos Amigos restaurant, located in Roseburg, said KPIC. The illnesses appear to have occurred from April 9-17, added KPIC.
Salmonella, the most prevalent food borne pathogen in this country, is an organism that can cause serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people, and others with weakened immune systems. Infection with Salmonella can result in the organism getting into the bloodstream and producing more severe illnesses such as arterial infections (i.e., infected aneurysms), endocarditis, and arthritis.
Dawnelle Marshall of the Public Health Division of the Douglas County Health Department said that the source of the outbreak remains unknown and that interviews continue with patrons of the restaurant who visited the establishment during the outbreak period in order to determine the outbreakâ€™s timeline and origin, wrote KPIC.
“We’ve not been able to pinpoint the source, whether that is a food item, whether there is cross-contamination. We have not been able to do that, but we do have sampling that is pending, and those results should be in later this week,” said Marshall. Los Dos Amigos is cooperating in the investigation, added Marshall.
“They’re taking suggestions, they’re sharing information about how they process food, and what they do with foods. So until we know what that source is, it’s hard to evaluate what that potential cause can be,” said Marshall, quoted KPIC.
Marshall also said that some people have fallen very ill with dehydration that required intravenous fluids, reported KPIC.
Salmonella poisoning can also lead to Reiterâ€™s Syndrome, a difficult-to-treat reactive arthritis characterized by severe joint pain, irritation of the eyes, and painful urination. Some Salmonella bacteria are antibiotic resistant, largely due to the use of antibiotics to promote the growth of feed animals.
We recently wrote that a report from the Produce Safety Project found that food borne illnesses are costing the United States $152 billion annually with one-quarterâ€”$39 billionâ€”the result of food borne illnesses associated with fresh, canned, and processed produce. According to the federal government, 76 million people each year come down with some form of food poisoning; hundreds of thousands are hospitalized and about 5,000 die.