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State investigating an outbreak of foodborne illness in the region

ALBANY – State and local health departments are investigating an outbreak of cyclosporiosis in the capital region.

Gastrointestinal disease, which can spread through contaminated food and water, has been confirmed in 11 people so far.

Symptoms began in mid-June and many of the patients reported eating at the Albany Italian-American Community Center, Prime Life Restaurant at the Beltrone Senior Living Colony Community Center, and a private buffet at Union College. from Schenectady, public health officials. I said.

While cyclosporiosis is endemic in some parts of the world, epidemics in the United States are often associated with imported fresh products contaminated with a fecal parasite called Cyclospora cayetanensis.

Public health officials said there was no indication that the parasite had been transmitted through mishandling or food preparation in local facilities, which cooperated with the investigation. Instead, contamination often occurs before arrival at food distribution centers and restaurants, they said, and is not easily eliminated by a standard rinse.

Additional restaurants could be identified as the survey progresses, they added.

The County Health Departments of Albany, Montgomery, Saratoga and Schenectady assist the state in its investigation.

The symptoms of cyclosporiosis occur approximately one to two weeks after ingestion. They include watery diarrhea, loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps, bloating, nausea and fatigue.
If the symptoms are not treated, the symptoms may lose a month or more and may return one or more times.

Infection is usually not transmitted directly from one person to another, according to health officials.

Regardless of the epidemic in the capital region, public health officials said they were closely monitoring the increase in the number of cyclosporiosis cases nationwide and nationally.

Cases are reported throughout the year in the United States, but most often in the spring and summer, with cases beginning around May and culminating in June and July, according to the Federal Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC reports have reported only 23 cases in 10 states from May 1 to June 24 this year. Last year, 2,299 laboratory-confirmed cases were reported in 33 states between May and August.

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