E. coli outbreak leaves child in critical condition
Last Updated: Friday, October
24, 2008 | 4:35 PM ET
A child infected with a
dangerous strain of E. coli was in critical condition Friday, health
officials in North Bay
said, as they delivered the latest information on the city's outbreak.
The number of people reporting
symptoms increased to 209, up two from Thursday. The total includes 39
laboratory confirmed cases of E. coli O157:H7, from eight health units in Ontario and one in Quebec, health officials said.
"Our thoughts go out to
all those who are dealing with illness from E. coli, especially the family
with their child who is in critical condition in hospital with Hemolytic
Uremic Syndrome (HUS)," said Dr. Catherine Whiting, medical officer of
health for the North Bay
The child, who is less than 15
years old but not an infant, is being treated at Toronto's Hospital for Sick Children, said
health officials. No other details were provided.
There could be more cases of
HUS or other complications, Whiting said.
HUS, which can result in kidney
failure, occurs in three to five per cent of those infected with the E. coli
strain, and up to 15 per cent among children under 10 who are infected, the North Bay health unit
said on its website.
The health unit said symptoms
of HUS include:
- Puffiness around the eyes and ankles.
- A decrease in the amount of urine produced.
The child is a secondary case,
meaning he or she contracted the bacteria from someone sickened with E. coli
Health officials ordered the Harvey's restaurant on Algonquin Avenue in North Bay closed on Oct. 12 after linking
it the outbreak.
The investigation to find the
Also on Friday, a class action
lawsuit was launched against the company that owns Harvey's.
In a statement of claim filed
in court, two people who live in the North Bay area allege they were infected
with E. coli after eating at the Harvey's and had to pay expenses associated
with the illness.
The allegations have not been
proven in court.
Cara Operations Ltd., owner of Harvey's, was not
immediately available for comment.
from Canadian Press