ATLANTA – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is investigating a multi-state outbreak of Listeria monocytogenes that has been linked to deli meats although a specific type of deli meat and common supplier have not yet been identified.
As of Oct. 22, 2020, CDC said 10 people infected with the outbreak strain of Listeria were reported from Florida, Massachusetts and New York. All 10 individuals were hospitalized and one person from Florida has died. Interviews with nine case patients revealed they ate Italian-style meats such as salami, mortadella and prosciutto, CDC said. The affected individuals reported buying prepackaged deli meats and meats sliced at deli counters at various locations.
Case patients range in age from 40 to 89 years and 80% of the affected individuals are female, the agency said.
People with listeriosis usually report symptoms starting one to four weeks after eating food contaminated with the pathogen. CDC said some people have reported symptoms starting as late as 70 days after exposure or as early as the same day of exposure. Symptoms can include headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance, and convulsions in addition to fever and muscle aches.
Pregnant women typically experience only fever and other flu-like symptoms, such as fatigue and muscle aches. However, infections during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage, stillbirth, premature delivery or life-threatening infection of the newborn, according to CDC.