Canadian health agencies are investigating the outbreak of hepatitis A in Saskatchewan and Alberta. Possible Source: Strawberries.
The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) issued a statement on Friday stating that many sick people ate imported fresh strawberries before they became ill.
This particular berry was sold at cooperative stores in Saskatchewan and Alberta between March 5-9, 2022.
As of May 27, six cases have been confirmed by the lab in Saskatchewan and four in Alberta.
Authorities say people between the ages of 10 and 75 became ill between early April and mid-April 2022.
Four people are being treated at the hospital. No casualties were reported.
The PHAC is working with provincial public health partners, the Canadian Food Research Institute (CFIA) and Health Canada to investigate the outbreak. No relevant info was found on this topic.
Anyone who suspects they may have been exposed to these organic strawberries or may have symptoms of hepatitis A infection should see a health care provider immediately.
Officials say hepatitis A can be prevented within 14 days of being vaccinated.
Check the freezer
Affected strawberries are no longer sold in Canada, and people are being asked to check their freezers.
If the then-dated berries are stored in the snow, throw them away immediately. If it is not clear where the strawberries came from, throw them out.
PHAC advises people to wash their hands before preparing food or before eating, after using the toilet or changing diapers.
No one diagnosed with hepatitis A should prepare or serve food or drink to others.
Public health officials advise washing and cleaning stored drawers, cupboards or containers using kitchen sanitizers.
People can prepare a bleach solution – using five milliliters of household bleach in a labeled spray bottle at a ratio of 750 ml to water – and rinse with water.
What to see
According to PHAC, most people will fully recover from hepatitis A infection, but the risk of serious complications increases with age and those with basic liver disease.
In addition, not all sufferers show symptoms. Adults are more likely than children to experience symptoms of the virus, including:
- Dark urine.
- Fatigue (fatigue).
- Nausea and vomiting.
- Abdominal cramps or abdominal pain.
- Jaundice (yellowing of the skin and eyes).
Symptoms usually appear 14 to 28 days after exposure, but only after 50 days.
Officials say the symptoms last less than two months, while mild cases last one to two weeks. In severe cases the symptoms can last up to nine months.