The New York City Health Department is currently investigating a cluster of three patients with Listeria monocytogenes infections.

All three patients reported purchasing ready-to-eat products from a deli counter, prior to illness onset, at NetCost Market at 3100 Ocean Ave. in Brooklyn. All three are from Brooklyn.

Patrons who purchased ready-to-eat products from a deli at this NetCost Market prior to Sept. 5 should discard the food immediately, according to the health department.

The clinical isolates of the three patients are highly related to each other by whole genome sequencing (WGS). Food and environmental specimens collected at the deli area were found to be highly related to the clinical isolates by WGS. 

All three patients were hospitalized. There have been no deaths associated with this cluster. Diagnosis dates for these patients ranged from June 30 to July 20, and all are younger than 50 years of age. 

About Listeria infections
Food contaminated with Listeria monocytogenes may not look or smell spoiled but can still cause serious and sometimes life-threatening infections. People who have eaten any recalled product and developed symptoms of Listeria infection should seek medical treatment and tell their doctors about the possible Listeria exposure.

Also, anyone who has eaten any of the mentioned products should monitor themselves for symptoms during the coming weeks because it can take up to 70 days after exposure to Listeria for symptoms of listeriosis to develop.

Symptoms of Listeria infection can include vomiting, nausea, persistent fever, muscle aches, severe headache, and neck stiffness. Specific laboratory tests are required to diagnose Listeria infections, which can mimic other illnesses.

Pregnant women, the elderly, young children, and people such as cancer patients who have weakened immune systems are particularly at risk of serious illnesses, life-threatening infections, and other complications. Although infected pregnant women may experience only mild, flu-like symptoms, their infections can lead to premature delivery, infection of the newborn, or even stillbirth.

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