Botulism in France, 2013-2016

Human botulism is a rare but severe neurological disease which is submitted to the French Public Health. The biological diagnosis is performed by the National Reference Center of Anaerobic Bacteria and Botulism (CNR), Institut Pasteur, Paris.

This study carries the status of human botulism in France During the 2013-2016 period based on the epidemiological data of Public Health France and the biological investigation of CNR. episodes

Thirty-nine of confirmed botulism and 3 suspected episodes involving 68 and 4 persons, respectively were Identified: 6 Type A episodes (10 cases), 26 type B episodes (47 boxes), type 2 F episodes (5 cases), and 5 undetermined type episodes (6 boxes). The source of botulism was foodborne in 36 outbreaks (66 cases) and 6 cases were infant botulism. All type A and F botulism cases were severe forms

The incriminated food was identified in 15 of the 36 episodes of foodborne botulism. Homemade preparations of pork meat, especially raw ham, were responsible for 13 type B episodes, including 3 due to imported meat. Homemade pork meat was suspected in 12 other outbreaks. Other included pheasant pie and home canned asparagus. One of the two type F episodes was caused by industrial ground meat contaminated with Clostridium baratii F7 . No food has been identified in infant botulism and environmental contamination has been suspected in three cases. Penicillin and metronidazole resistant C. botulinum A2 strain was isolated from an infant botulism case with relapses.

Human botulism is rare in France. However, botulism surveillance is required for early identification of emerging novel botulinum toxin types, such as in the two C. baratii type F outbreaks in 2014 and 2015. Botulism surveillance also helps addressing recommendations to industrialists and consumers regarding hygiene and food preservation practices. Finally, this surveillance allows to quickly identify contaminated food in order to withdraw it from the market or from family’s homes.

Human botulism in France, 2013-2016

BEH

Christelle Mazuet 1 , Nathalie Jourdan-Da Silva 2 , Christine Legeay 1 , Jean Sautereau 1 , Michel R. Popoff 1

http://invs.santepubliquefrance.fr/beh/2018/3/2018_3_1.html

Fish-linked botulism in Nigeria

I’ve chronicled my fear of botulism many times before. I still can stuff, but I really pay attention to what I’m doing.

Dried fish and botulism seem to go together. Five bot cases in Germany and Spain were linked to dried fish in 2016.

There were 90 illnesses and nine deaths in 2017 from foodborne botulism in Ukraine. That’s a lot. Fish were a factor in many of these illnesses.

According to Outbreak News Daily, two unlucky Nigerians have died from botulism after consuming fish.

Three family members contracted suspected foodborne botulism, resulting in the deaths of the father and mother, according to the  the Nigerian Centres for Disease Control (NCDC). Fish appears to be the common food source.

The event descriptions of the two fatalities is provided by the World Health Organization (WHO):

The woman, a 47 year-old, presented to King’s Care Hospital, Abuja, on 7 January 2018, with vomiting, fever, sudden blurring of vision, generalized body weakness, dysphagia and odynophagia, and left ptosis. She was semi-conscious. She was initially diagnosed with ischaemic heart disease, with esophageal stricture and central retinal vein thrombosis. However, her neurological symptoms worsened rapidly, progressing to complete bilateral ptosis, paralysis of her respiratory muscles, and respiratory failure. She was referred approximately 24 hours after admission and died in transit.

Her 49 year-old husband presented to the same hospital with nausea, dizziness, vomiting, progressive dysarthria, odynophagia and partial ptosis. He was transferred to Zenith Medical and Kidney Centre, where his symptoms worsened. He suffered progressive respiratory failure, which required a tracheostomy and ventilation, and died on 15 January 2018.

Their 15-year-old daughter also developed symptoms and was hospitalized as of last week.

All three cases had eaten fish at home in the previous 24 hours. Two further children, who stayed in the same house, are currently in Lagos and are being monitored remotely. A third child is in Karu, but monitoring has been hampered by uncooperative relatives.

 

4 in family sick from suspected botulism in Sweden

From Pro-Med:

A total of 4 people in a family in Gothenburg suffered from botulism. For this reason,
Eldsberga chark recalls its product “Suha Bosan Point”, Smoked beef
from Bosnia in Sweden.

The meat, totalling more than 40 kg [approx. 88 lb] – with Holland as
its country of origin, – has been sold in bulk at, among other places,
the Orient House between that [7 and 20 Nov 2017]. The meat has also
been found in sandwiches sold by a baguette cafe.

Sime Trosic is the CEO of Eldsberga chark. “It’s hell that someone may
have suffered badly because of our products. I have children myself
and can hardly describe how it would feel if they floated between life
and death, ” he said.

The revocation is made “for cautionary reasons” and according to the
National Food Administration, it has not yet been established that
botulism that the 4 family members suffered from was from the beef.

The Authority continues to investigate the source of infection
together with Goteborg’s Environmental Management and Eldsberga
Chark.

“According to the Swedish Food and Drug Administration, we can work as
usual, they found no mistakes in our routines”, says Sime Trosic. He
urges customers who bought “Suha Bosan Point” during the current
period of time to return it at the place of purchase.

The 4 affected family members have been discharged from the hospital
and are improving. “I’m glad they’re on the improvement path, that’s
most important”, says Sime Trosic.

No further cases of botulism have been found.

Fonterra fined $183m over contamination scandal

New Zealand’s Fonterra has been ordered to pay 105 million euros (NZ$183 million) in damages to French food giant Danone as a result of the Fonterra food safety failures of 2013.

Danone had sued Fonterra as a result of the whey protein concentrate contamination scandal in 2013, when Fonterra quarantined several batches over fears it was contaminated with clostridium bacteria. It later turned out to be a false alarm.

Danone launched a legal suit in New Zealand and arbitration proceedings in Singapore, seeking restoration for the costs of recalling the whey protein concentrate.

At the time, Fonterra said it expected any court action would show the Kiwi firm didn’t have any liability in the contract, and it recognised a contingent liability of just $14m over the recall.

In 2014, New Zealand’s Court of Appeal upheld an earlier decision that the Singapore arbitration proceedings should be the first avenue, as provided for in the contract, but refused to permanently stay the legal suit.

The result of the Singapore proceedings was released on Friday, and Danone says it “welcomes” the decision.

3 members of NZ family stricken with botulism from wild boar: 1 has begun to ‘mouth words’

The oldest member of a South Waikato family struck down by suspected botulism poisoning has begun to mouth words, a spokesman says.

Shibu Kochummen, 35, his wife Subi Babu, 33, and his mother Alekutty Daniel, 62, ate a wild boar curry for dinner two weeks ago at their Putaruru home.

Within minutes of eating, Babu and Daniel collapsed, vomiting. Kochummen called an ambulance but collapsed while on the phone.

The trio have been in a serious but stable condition in Waikato Hospital for the past two weeks and at the weekend Daniel became “slightly responsive”, having co-ordinated eye movement and the ability to focus.

“No one has spoken but we are beginning to get focus on movement,” family spokesman Joji Varghese earlier told Belinda Feek of the New Zealand Herald.

He confirmed today that Daniel was now beginning to mouth words but she wasn’t yet talking.

Subi Babu was also making progress but not as much as her mother-in-law.

Shibu Kochummen has yet to respond.

Varghese said doctors did not know if Daniel’s ability to follow an object with her eyes meant she was comprehending yet and they were still awaiting results of tests being conducted in Brisbane to definitively diagnose botulism.

But, but mom, I don’t like beets

I called my mother the other day and she cut me short because she was jarring beets.

“You know your father likes his pickled beets.”

OK.

It was one of our go-to phrases growing up, and I have no idea why.

Probably because beets were a staple of 1970s funky glassware along with pickles and pickled onions.

But to do beets right, you may need advice from North Carolina canning queen, Ben Chapman, who produced this infosheet five years ago.

Nacho cheese botulism was likely linked to retail practices

Lots of folks must like to eat gas station food; even the nacho cheese and nacho combos. I figure they are good sellers since so much retail space is dedicated to the snack. Earlier this year, according to a memo from the California Department of Public Health, ten people became ill with botulism after eating nacho cheese from Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Walnut Grove, CA.

The memo highlights three notable things that came out of the investigation:

  • The 5 pound bag of nacho cheese collected at the retail location on May 5, 2017 was being used past the “Best By” date.
  • Records were not being maintained by the gas station employees indicating when the bag of nacho cheese was originally added to the warming unit.
  • The plastic tool designed to open the bags of cheese (provided with the nacho cheese warming and dispensing unit) was not being used by employees.

So the cheese was in the dispenser for a while, no one knows how long, and folks were using some other means to open the bag. Maybe some utensil with some soil ended up inserting bot spores deep into the anaerobic cheese bag.

 

Cole Hansberger fights botulism

Every day after work I look forward to playing and hugging my 2 kids, it’s what keeps me going and motivated to enjoy life to its’ fullest. The following story is heartbreaking to read…

Cole Hansberger has been in the Intensive Care Unit at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center in Glendale since Aug. 6, his first birthday.
The day before he turned 1, Cole’s mother, Jackie Hansberger, noticed his head was drooping as he crawled.
By 5 p.m., that evening, Cole could no longer crawl.
At 3 a.m., the next morning, he could no longer sit up, she said.
The Peoria woman took her son to an emergency room, after which he was then transferred to Banner Thunderbird to be further evaluated.
Cole eventually was diagnosed with botulism, a rare condition that affects about 110 people per year in the United States, 72 percent of them infants, according to Banner officials.
Botulism is caused by ingesting spores of bacteria found in dirt, soil, dusty areas and certain foods.
These spores produce toxins that can lead to paralysis, said Dr. Rahul Chawla, pediatric critical-care physician at Thunderbird Medical Center who is treating Cole.
Jackie Hansberger said she hasn’t been home since Cole was admitted to intensive care.
“I refuse to leave his bedside,” she told The Arizona Republic on Wednesday. “Every day I sit, stare at the monitor all day, just to make sure my son’s breathing and he’s OK.
“Sometimes you get frustrated with your children, but I would pay a million dollars just to hear my son cry right now. I haven’t held him in over a week.”
Hansberger described Cole as rambunctious and amazing. His eyes and smile light up the room, she said.
She also has a 4-year-old son who is at home with her husband.
Chawla works 24-hour shifts and said he often gets close with a patient’s parents.
“Cole’s mom’s a rock,” he said. “I don’t think she’s left the unit.”
Hansberger has been told Cole faces a long recovery, but doctors offer a hopeful prognosis.
According to Chawla, Cole is still critically ill. He is on a ventilator and has minimal movement in his arms and legs. He will remain in intensive care for the next week to 10 days.
Cole will have to learn muscle memory again and undergo physical therapy sessions, which could last months. But Chawla said Cole should be able to return to a normal life.
Chawla said people should know the symptoms of botulism so they can seek medical attention immediately.
He said Cole’s symptoms were a classic indicator: muscle weakness, often starting with the nerves in the face and moving downward to the legs.
Chawla said people should avoid ingesting or being exposed to dirt, and washing fruits and vegetables to reduce the chances of botulism.
Hansberger wants all parents to be aware of botulism, although it is extremely rare.
“As a parent, you never expect it,” she said. “It’s a very scary experience. It humbles you as a person. Nothing else matters except in the moment.”
A GoFundMe account has been set up for Cole and his family

There’s a lot of botulism in Ukraine this year

According to MiceTimes of Asia (great name) there have been 90 illnesses and nine deaths in 2017 from foodborne botulism in Ukraine this year. Seems like a lot. Home canned foods and dried fish have been linked to many of the illnesses. Dried fish and botulism seem to go together. Five bot cases in Germany and Spain were linked to dried fish in 2016.

To prevent botulism, you must carefully follow the canning of vegetables, fruits, meat, fish and mushrooms. Before the use of canned foods should be warmed to a temperature of 100°C for 30 minutes to destroy botulinum toxin.

In no case can not eat canned meat and fish, if the iron Bank is inflated or deformed.

Something may be lost in translation.

Ukrainian bot death linked to dried fish

In late 2016 six cases of botulism were linked to dried salted fish products in Germany and  Spain. According to 24.my.info a woman from the Kirovohrad region of Ukraine died from botulism also linked to dried fish (something may be lost in translation).

In the town of Novoukrainka of Kirovohrad region woman died from botulism after eating dried fish, which she bought personally in the store ATB city of Kharkiv. It is reported Kirovohrad regional laboratory center.

According to the report, the first symptoms of the disease in women appeared on July 6 near midnight, four hours after eating dried fish, which she (her words) bought personally in the store ATB city of Kharkiv.