Trichinosis is an infection of roundworms in the body. The worms grow in the body from cysts that can be found in the meat of contaminated animals. Roundworms are especially common in pork, although their cysts may be found in the meat of a horse, fox, bear, walrus, rat or even lion meat.
Because roundworm cysts are transported through food, they embed into the digestive system, growing into adult roundworms within the intestines. Eventually, the worms can invade other tissues in the body, which can lead to heart arrhythmias, pneumonia, encephalitis and even heart failure.
Most cases of roundworm infection result in fever, abdominal cramping and diarrhea, as well as muscle pain and weakness. Treatment is limited to intestinal roundworms, as roundworm cysts can remain in the muscles for many years.
In the U.S., strict standards are in place to help prevent roundworm infections. However, occasional cases of food borne trichinosis are reported each year. When multiple cases of trichinosis are reported to occur from exposure to the same food source, the cases are determined to be an outbreak.
Even foods produced from commercial sources are not necessarily immune from trichinosis outbreaks. At Simon Greenstone Panatier Bartlett,PC, we represent the victims of trichinosis outbreaks. If you have been affected by a commercial food borne roundworm outbreak, call our trichinosis attorneys today. We will fight for you.