Family physicians and their patients should be aware that an outbreak of foodborne illness caused by Salmonella serotype Montevideo that has been linked to certain salami products is responsible for more than 200 reported cases in 42 states and the District of Columbia.
FDA officials said in a Jan. 29 news release(www.fda.gov) that the agency is investigating the outbreak, along with the CDC; the U.S. Department of Agriculture, or USDA; the Rhode Island Department of Health and other state agencies.
According to a USDA news release(www.fsis.usda.gov), as of Jan. 23, Pascoag, R.I.-based Daniele Inc. had recalled more than 1.2 million pounds of ready-to-eat varieties of Italian sausage products, including salami. The USDA Food Safety and Inspection Service has posted a list of products associated with that recall, as well as a second list of additional products recalled(www.fsis.usda.gov) on Jan. 31 that consumers can examine to see if they have any of the products in their homes.
A third notice was issued on Feb. 4, citing yet more products recalled(www.fsis.usda.gov) by the manufacturer.
The CDC said in advice issued to consumers(www.cdc.gov) that people should return any affected products they may have to the place of purchase or throw them away. The agency said the recalled products, some of which were produced as recently as December, can have a shelf life of as much as one year.
The most common symptoms of salmonellosis are diarrhea, abdominal cramps and fever within eight to 72 hours, CDC officials said. Additional symptoms may include chills, headache, nausea and vomiting that can last as long as seven days. The agency said infants, the elderly and people with impaired immune systems are more likely than others to develop severe illness.
Patients who think they might have become ill from eating a recalled product should consult their physicians. The CDC urges physicians(www.cdc.gov) to report suspected cases of foodborne illness to their local public health officials.