Third confirmed case of cyclospora in LA - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

Doctors, agriculture officials on guard after third confirmed cyclospora case in LA

New Orleans, La. - With news of Louisiana's third confirmed cyclospora case Monday, some people said they're on guard.

"Yeah, I worry about it. Anything that's gonna make me sick, yeah, I worry about it," said Brenda Allen.

"I'm deeply concerned because I eat a lot of vegetables," said Oscar Donahue. "I mean, I'm trying to do the right thing for sure and it is stunning. It's absolutely a shock that something as common and simple as lettuce could be dangerous. Most people I would think, like me, don't want to hear that."

The newest Louisiana case, out of Caddo Parish, follows cases in Bienville Parish and closer to home in Terrebonne.

Two of the three infected people said they had eaten lettuce out of Texas leading up to their symptoms.

According to the Centers For Disease Control, as of Monday afternoon there have been 425 cases in 16 states.

State Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain said it's part of an ongoing concern with the way we consume produce these days.

"We used to eat products when they were in season and now we are really spoiled," Strain said. "We want what we want when we want it, year round, so it has to move great distances and it is commingled and it is put into refrigeration and it touches more hands."

That, according to doctors, can lead to parasites like cyclospora.

Dr. Fred Lopez with LSU said, if infected, a person will typically begin feeling effects in about a week.

"Symptoms are typically diarrhea, watery diarrhea. People can have bloating. They can have nausea. They can have vomiting. They can even have associated symptoms that look a lot like the flu," Lopez said. "Particularly those who are immuno-compromised, whose immune systems are not working well, this can last for weeks to months and we've seen some people who get better and then relapse again."

However, Lopez and Strain said the key to avoiding cyclospora is simple -- wash produce thoroughly, for an extended period of time.

"Getting (the parasite) off the surface (of the produce) is what's really important. That's why washing your fruits and vegetables is particularly important," Lopez said.

"I've been before groups and said, ‘How many of you have a vegetable brush,' and maybe one person raises their hand. ‘How many of you actually use them to scrub your vegetables?' Nobody. So, we have to get back to some of those basics," he said.

State health officials said neither of the people infected hospitalization. Due to the fact that all three began feeling symptoms in early July, Lopez said it's reasonable to believe the contaminated source may have already moved out of the food supply.

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • 'Home Alone' dad John Heard dies at 72

    'Home Alone' dad John Heard dies at 72

    Saturday, July 22 2017 10:26 AM EDT2017-07-22 14:26:16 GMT
    Saturday, July 22 2017 11:22 AM EDT2017-07-22 15:22:00 GMT

    John Heard appeared in numerous movies and television shows throughout a lengthy acting career, but it was his role as the father of Macauley Culkin's character in two "Home Alone" films that gained him notoriety.

    more>>

    John Heard appeared in numerous movies and television shows throughout a lengthy acting career, but it was his role as the father of Macauley Culkin's character in two "Home Alone" films that gained him notoriety.

    more>>
  • Man admits he 'flung' infant son, causing his death

    Man admits he 'flung' infant son, causing his death

    Friday, July 21 2017 6:33 AM EDT2017-07-21 10:33:52 GMT
    Cody Bates (Source: LMDC)Cody Bates (Source: LMDC)

    Police responded to a call of an unresponsive three-month-old child on June 9 in an apartment complex in Fern Creek. Officials interviewed multiple people to find out how exactly Preston Amato died.

    more>>

    Police responded to a call of an unresponsive three-month-old child on June 9 in an apartment complex in Fern Creek. Officials interviewed multiple people to find out how exactly Preston Amato died.

    more>>
  • NASA issues warning: You may have a bad pair of eclipse glasses

    NASA issues warning: You may have a bad pair of eclipse glasses

    Friday, July 21 2017 11:22 AM EDT2017-07-21 15:22:03 GMT
    The path of the total solar eciipse on August 21, 2017 crosses directly over Columbia and the Midlands. (Source: NASA)The path of the total solar eciipse on August 21, 2017 crosses directly over Columbia and the Midlands. (Source: NASA)

    As the world, the United States, and South Carolina prepared for arguably the coolest celestial event in decades, our old friends at NASA want you to know that pairs of unsafe solar eclipse glasses are being distributed. 

    more>>

    As the world, the United States, and South Carolina prepared for arguably the coolest celestial event in decades, our old friends at NASA want you to know that pairs of unsafe solar eclipse glasses are being distributed. 

    more>>
Powered by Frankly