THROW OUT ALL THE ROMAINE LETTUCE!!

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…CDC advises, as E. Coli warning expands. (Story from Yahoo.com)

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has updated their warning about a multistate outbreak of E. coli. Formerly linked to just chopped romaine lettuce, the agency has expanded their recommendation to throw away all romaine lettuce — including whole heads of romaine and hearts of romaine, plus chopped romaine and salad mixes containing romaine lettuce — from the Yuma, Arizona growing region.

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“Do not buy or eat romaine lettuce at a grocery store or restaurant unless you can confirm it is not from the Yuma, Arizona, growing region,” the agency warned, going on to state that, “Unless the source of the product is known, consumers anywhere in the United States who have any store-bought romaine lettuce at home should not eat it and should throw it away, even if some of it was eaten and no one has gotten sick.”

If you have chopped lettuce in your refrigerator and you are not sure if it is romaine, you should still throw it away, the CDC says.

The expanded warning is based on information from newly reported illnesses in Alaska, who reported eating lettuce from whole heads of romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Arizona growing region. At least 53 people in 16 states have gotten sick from eating contaminated lettuce since March 31, and 31 of them were hospitalized for illnesses linked to the lettuce. Five of them developed a type of potentially life-threatening kidney failure.

The lettuce seems to be coming from the Yuma, Ariz., region, and it is specifically contaminated with E. coli O157:H7. E. coli generally causes severe stomach cramps, diarrhea that is often bloody, and vomiting; it may also cause a fever. Like many other food-borne illnesses, some infections are mild, whereas others can be dangerous.

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