E. coli, or escherichia coli, is a bacteria that lives in the digestive system – usually without posing a health danger. However, some strains of e. coli are harmful and may even cause death in young children, elderly adults, and individuals with weakened immune systems. Some strains of e. coli have also been linked to respiratory diseases, urinary tract infections and pneumonia.
Symptoms of an e. coli infection include vomiting, diarrhea and mid-grade fevers that usually do not rise above 101˚F. Although the Centers for Disease Control reports that most e. coli infections last no more than a week, a small percentage – roughly one in every 10 to 20 cases – will result in hemolytic uremic syndrome, which can be fatal.
There are many sources of e. coli, including lake water, unpasteurized milk and cheese products and direct or indirect contact with fecal matter. However, 20 percent of all confirmed cases of e. coli are directly related to a recognized public outbreak.
E. coli outbreaks are usually connected to contaminated food sources. Food borne e. coli outbreaks have been frequently linked to restaurants and contaminated beef on grocery store shelves, as well as other foods. Victims of e. coli outbreaks may benefit from the assistance of a qualified e. coli attorney.
At Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett, PC, our food poisoning lawyers represent the victims of e. coli outbreaks. Everyone has a right to consume foods that are safe and free of contaminates. When an e. coli outbreak occurs, the health and safety of those affected is at risk. We are committed to helping sufferers of food borne illnesses recover financial, emotional and physical losses.