More than a dozen people have been sickened by Salmonella in Denmark since mid-September.
The Statens Serum Institute, Danish Veterinary and Food Administration (Fødevarestyrelsen) and the DTU Food Institute are investigating to see if the source of infection could be recently recalled Danish eggs.
There is concern that consumers may still have some of the recalled eggs in their homes because they have best-before dates of Nov. 12 and Nov. 16.
The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration took environmental samples at a producer of eggs on Sept. 25. Most samples were positive for Salmonella Enteritidis but it is not yet known if it is the same type found in human cases.
Seven people in hospitals
The 15 sick people live all over the country with seven cases in Syddanmark, three in Midtjylland, two each in Nordjylland and Sjælland and one in Hovedstaden.
Patients are seven women and eight men aged from two to 85 years old. Seven of them have been hospitalized, which is higher than the normal hospitalization rate for Salmonella patients.
Whole genome sequencing found the strains from patients were very closely related to each other, which means it is likely there was a common source of infection.
Danaeg has recalled eggs stamped with 081131 as the last six digits. It involves free range eggs stamped with 1DK081131 branded Danæg and Landlyst and caged eggs marked 3DK081131 branded Henriettelund with best before dates of Nov. 16.
They were sold at stores including Spar, Meny, Fakta, Aldi, Coop 365 and SuperBrugsen as well as on Nemlig.com.
The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration advised consumers to take affected eggs back to the store where they were purchased or to discard them.
In Sweden, Kronägg recalled eggs from Danaeg’s packing plant with plant number DK7003 due to potential Salmonella. Eggs stamped with the code 2DK081131 were sold at Lidl stores and have a best before date of Nov. 12. The implicated eggs were also sent to parts of Germany.
Food contaminated with Salmonella bacteria does not usually look, smell, or taste spoiled. Anyone can become sick with a Salmonella infection. Infants, children, seniors, and people with weakened immune systems are at higher risk of serious illness because their immune systems are fragile, according to the CDC.
Anyone who has eaten any recalled products and developed symptoms of Salmonella food poisoning should seek medical attention. Sick people should tell their doctors about the possible exposure to Salmonella bacteria because special tests are necessary to diagnose salmonellosis. Salmonella infection symptoms can mimic other illnesses, frequently leading to misdiagnosis.
Symptoms of Salmonella infection can include diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and fever within 12 to 72 hours after eating contaminated food. Otherwise, healthy adults are usually sick for four to seven days. In some cases, however, diarrhea may be so severe that patients require hospitalization.
Older adults, children, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems, such as cancer patients, are more likely to develop a severe illness and serious, sometimes life-threatening conditions. Some people get infected without getting sick or showing any symptoms. However, they may still spread the infections to others.
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