The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control Wednesday said Wednesday there were three labratory-confirmed cases of Vibrio cholerae in people who recently consumed raw shellfish.
There is no evidence that the contaminated shellfish originated in the waters of South Carolina, DHEC said.
Symptoms of Vibrio cholerae include nausea, vomiting and diarrhea that begin from a few hours to up to five days after consumption of raw shellfish. The infection is usually mild or without symptoms, but can occasionally be severe. In severe cases, an infected person may experience profuse watery diarrhea and vomiting that can cause dehydration and shock.
Vibrio cholerae is typically spread through food that is contaminated by the bacteria. The bacteria causes gastroenteritis, not cholera, DHEC said.
DHEC is working with the Food and Drug Administration and other partners to learn the source of the contaminated shellfish.
The elderly and young are particularly at risk. Bell said the best way to protect against the illness is to cook shellfish thoroughly before consumption.For more information on Vibrio cholerae, please visit http://www.fda.gov/food/foodborneillnesscontaminants/causesofillnessbadbugbook/ucm070419.htm.
Contact AMANDA KELLEY at 626-0381, or follow her at Twitter.com/TSN_akelley.