Salmonella

What to Know About Illinois' Salmonella Outbreak Linked to Onions

The onions could still be in homes or businesses

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Illinois health officials have reported a salmonella outbreak connected to onions statewide as more than three dozen residents have been diagnosed with the illness as of Wednesday.

Here's what to know:

How many people have been impacted?

According to the latest updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, individuals in at least 37 states have been diagnosed with salmonella in connection with the outbreak. Of those, 129 patients have been hospitalized.

In Illinois, at least 37 people have been diagnosed with the disease, with 25 more diagnosed in Wisconsin.

What food caused the salmonella cases?

According to the CDC, the outbreak stems from fresh whole red, white and yellow onions, imported from Chihuahua, Mexico and distributed by ProSource, Incorporated.

The onions were sold to restaurants and grocery stores.

ProSource says the onions were last imported on Aug. 27, but have a shelf life of up to three months in storage, and could still be in homes or businesses.

Businesses are advised to not sell or serve the onions that were imported from Chihuahua and distributed by ProSource. Consumers are advised to throw away onions that don’t have packaging.

How do I know if I have salmonella?

Salmonella can cause a wide variety of symptoms. Patients are advised to call a physician immediately if they:

  • Have diarrhea and a fever higher than 102
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Signs of dehydration, including dry mouth and throat and feeling dizzy when standing up

Symptom-onset usually occurs within six hours to six days after consuming the bacteria. Most individuals recover without treatment after 4-to-7 days.

Who is at highest risk for the illness?

Individuals with weakened immune systems, including children under the age of 5 and adults 65 and older, are at risk of more severe cases that could require hospitalization.

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