The Washington State Department of Health confirmed seven cases of E. coli in the state, apparently linked to Simple Truth Organic Power Greens purchased at QFC and Fred Meyer stores, making it the sixth state to have confirmed reports of an outbreak, according to the agency.
People who purchased Simple Truth Organic Power Greens with best-by dates through Dec. 20, 2021, should dispose of the products, the health agency advised in a news release. Products currently in the market don’t appear to be contaminated, the agency added.
King, Snohomish, Whatcom, Pierce, Thurston, Mason and Skagit counties each reported one case of E. coli between late November and early December. No deaths have been reported, but two individuals were hospitalized and one developed kidney failure.
Other states to have reported E. coli outbreaks include Oregon, California, Ohio, Mississippi and Alaska.
People noticing symptoms of E. coli, such as stomach cramps, nausea and especially bloody diarrhea should contact their health provider immediately, said Dr. Scott Lindquist, state epidemiologist for communicable diseases, in the news release.
“Even if you ate some of the product and did not get sick, throw the rest away,” he said.
While most people recover within a week, some illnesses may last longer and could lead to a type of kidney failure known as hemolytic uremic syndrome. Antibiotics and antidiarrheal medicines should not be taken unless the individual is sure they’re not ill with E. coli, as these medicines can increase the risk of kidney failure in someone ill with the bacteria, the agency said.
Symptoms of kidney failure caused by E. coli include fever, abdominal pain, pale skin tone, fatigue, irritability, and small unexplained bruises or bleeding from the nose and mouth, according to the health department. Adults or children with these symptoms need immediate emergency medical care.
Simple Truth is produced by Kroger, the parent company of QFC and Fred Meyer.
The opinions expressed in reader comments are those of the author only and do not reflect the opinions of The Seattle Times.