Salmonella outbreak linked to pre-cut melons — CDC

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At least 124 people in 36 states have been sickened in salmonella outbreaks linked to contact with live poultry in backyard flocks, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Friday.

Thirty-one people have been hospitalized in this outbreak, the CDC said, and no deaths have been reported. Six people are sick in IL, 11 in IN, 32 in MI, 10 in Missouri and one in Ohio. Walmart stores in IL have removed pre-cut melons linked to this outbreak from their shelves.

This advice from the CDC does not apply to whole melons.

A CDC investigation indicates pre-cut melons, including fruit salads, are a likely source of the outbreak in Michigan, Indiana, Missouri, Illinois and Ohio.

"The Illinois Department of Public Health is urging people not to eat pre-cut melon purchased from any Walmart store in Illinois, or any of the other affected states, at this time", said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D.

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MI has reported 32 cases of illness, and IN has reported 11.

"In interviews, 55 (74%) of 74 ill people with information available reported contact with chicks or ducklings in the week before their illness started", the CDC said.

Salmonella exposure usually involves symptoms of diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after being exposed to the bacteria. If you have recently purchased pre-cut melon from Walmart, throw it out.

Most people recover from a salmonella infection without treatment. The list of states and stores could expand depending on the investigation.

Officials say the IL salmonella cases linked to pre-cut melon affected people ages 23 to 87. The elderly, infants and people with compromised immune systems have the highest risk for serious illness. In rare cases, Salmonella infection can cause death unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.

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