Food poisoning outbreaks occur when a significant amount of a widely-distributed food product becomes contaminated with dangerous bacteria. This then causes people to develop foodborne illnesses, which can have serious health consequences. The bacteria that are most commonly associated with food poisoning outbreaks are salmonella and E. coli. In 2008, more than 700 people became sick with Salmonella food poisoning from peanut butter distributed from a contaminated processing plant. Contaminated Nestle Toll House refrigerated cookie dough caused an E. coli outbreak in June 2009. In that food poisoning outbreak, 72 people became ill and 34 required hospitalization.

Food Poisoning Symptoms

Food poisoning symptoms are caused by a bacterial infection of the gastrointestinal tract and generally include:

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Fatigue

These symptoms typically last from a few days to a week, and food poisoning treatment usually consists of rest and oral fluid replacement.

In some cases, food poisoning outbreaks can cause serious health complications. E. coli food poisoning outbreaks can cause a condition called Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS) which can lead to kidney failure or death. Reiter’s syndrome, a permanent condition that causes joint pain, eye irritation and painful urination, can result from Salmonella food poisoning.

Contact a Food Poisoning Lawyer

If you or a loved one has suffered serious health problems from a food poisoning outbreak, you may be entitled to compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, and lost wages. Contact us today for a free and confidential food poisoning outbreak case evaluation from a food poisoning lawyer.

Published November 17, 2011 by