Current Conditions

Partly Cloudy
7.9°C

Some demographics more vulnerable to E. coli infection

These Gort's Gouda raw milk cheeses have been recalled. Familiarize yourself with the packaging, and be sure to empty your fridge of any affected products.
Image Credit: Canadian Food Inspection Agency
September 19, 2013 - 5:33 PM

VERNON - Seniors and children may be more at risk of suffering adverse effects from eating E. coli laced foods.

The Interior Health Authority confirmed today that a person who ate contaminated Gort’s Gouda cheese and died directly of the infection was an elderly woman.

Dr. Rob Parker, with IHA, says seniors “are more likely to suffer a worse outcome” than other age groups who ingest the E. coli bacteria, as are children. These two groups are also at a higher risk of kidney failure.

While seniors and children are most vulnerable, Parker says “in this outbreak we’ve seen all ages.” Some people who consume the bacteria might not get sick at all.

“They may have been exposed previously and got some immunity, or only get mild (symptoms),” Parker says. “Most people will recover.”

The E. coli bacteria, which originates in the intestines of cattle and other livestock, can be transmitted to humans through food, water, and even petting zoos if you forget to wash your hands.

“It doesn’t take very much of the bacterial cells to cause an infection,” Parker says. “It (has) a high infection rate.”

The number of people getting sick from E. coli has been greatly reduced over the past 20 years as consumers and restaurants became more informed about the importance of cooking beef — the main source — all the way through, Parker says. Yet there continue to be outbreaks of the bacteria in industries where animal waste exists.

Symptoms typically show up 2-4 days after ingestion, but can take as long as ten. If you ate the cheese more than ten days ago, chances are you’re in the clear.

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency has recalled 14 Gort’s Gouda cheeses, and is in the process of inspecting the cheese farm to determine where the contamination came from. There are ten other confirmed cases of infection, and several more under investigation in B.C. and Alberta.

To contact the reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at chelston@infotelnews.ca, call (250)309-5230 or tweet @charhelston.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013
InfoTel News Ltd

  • Popular kamloops News
  • Comments
  • Murder victim found in Kelowna orchard identified
    KELOWNA - The identity of the woman whose body was found in a Kelowna orchard last week has been made public on social media. Kelowna resident Russia Katalina Nicholson was just 23-years-old
  • Nasty weather forecast for Thompson, Shuswap tomorrow
    THOMPSON-SHUSWAP - The Thompson and Shuswap could be in for some blustery weather tomorrow by midday. Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement warning of strong wind gusts a
  • Westsyde residents face uphill battle to bring Timmies to neighbourhood
    KAMLOOPS - It took just six days for 1,242 Westsyde residents to sign a petition calling for Tim Hortons to consider allowing a franchisee to open up shop at the corner of Westsyde Road and Overla
  • Kamloops girl shuts down suspect who tried to lure her
    KAMLOOPS - Police in Kamloops are looking for a man who allegedly tried to lure an 11-year-old girl in front of a Westsyde elementary school. Kamloops RCMP spokesperson Cpl. Jodi Shelkie say
  • UPDATE: Missing Kamloops teen located
    UPDATE: 5:06 a.m. Monday, Oct. 16, 2017 KAMLOOPS - RCMP say a missing 18-year-old girl has been located. All personal information about the missing person has been removed from this
View Site in: Desktop | Mobile