Foodborne Illness Outbreak Database

This database provides summaries of significant food and water related outbreaks occurring since 1984 caused by E. coli, Salmonella, Hepatitis A, Campylobacter and other pathogens. Read more »

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Gulf of Mexico Yellow-Fin Tuna 1998

In early December, four people experienced burning sensations in the mouth, metallic tastes, facial flushing, nausea, diarrhea, seating, and headache. They all sought physician care for the symptoms, and were diagnosed with scombroid poisoning. The Chester County Health Department (CCHD) investigated. Tuna from the restaurant was tested and found to have five times the normal level of histamines. CCHD and Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture conducted a traceback investigation, and found the fish came from a 40 to 60 pound yellow-fin tuna caught by a commercial fishing boat in the Gulf of Mexico in November, 1998. A wholesale retailer distributed the fish; no violations in handling were found.

  • Outbreak began:
  • December 1998
  • Affected Country:
  • US
  • Affected States/Territories:
  • Pennsylvania
  • Organism(s):
  • Toxin
  • Vehicle(s):
  • Seaafood, Finfish, Tuna
  • Molecular Results Available:
  • No
  • Test Results:
  • None
  • Location(s):
  • Restaurant
  • Brand Name(s):
  • Product Subject to Recall:
  • Unknown
  • Total ill:
  • 4
  • Number ill by Case Definition Known:
  • Yes
  • Number Laboratory Confirmed Cases:
  • 4
  • Number Probable Cases:
  • 0
  • Number Possible Cases:
  • 0
  • Anyone Hospitalized:
  • Yes
  • Number Hospitalized:
  • 1
  • Any Deaths:
  • No
  • Number Dead:
  • 0
  • Any References:
  • Yes

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