Illness from tainted oysters soars with heat

BCCDC reports unprecedented number of cases in June and July, shellfish risk grows with rise in water temperatures

An unprecedented number of cases of gastrointestinal illness from eating raw oysters has prompted an alert from the B.C. Centre For Disease Control.

A surge in shellfish-related illness because of the hot summer weather has prompted the B.C. Centre for Disease Control to issue a warning to oyster lovers.

The centre says 35 cases of a bacterial infection called Vibrio parahaemolyticus have been reported in June and July – an unprecedented number.

Most people got sick from eating raw B.C. oysters served in restaurants, although some cases involved oysters that were self-harvested or bought at retail outlets.

The bacteria occurs naturally in shellfish like oysters, clams, mussels, scallops and cockles and their concentrations rise in the summer months when water temperatures get warmer.

“The risk is especially high this summer, as we can see from the number of Vibrio infections reported during the last two months,” said BCCDC epidemiologist Marsha Taylor.

People can get sick when contaminated shellfish are eaten raw or undercooked.

Diarrhea is the most common symptom from infection, but nausea, vomiting, fever, headache and bloody stools can also result. Symptoms last three days to a week and don’t usually require treatment.

The BCCDC advises consumers to eat only cooked shellfish to destroy the bacteria and reduce the risk of gastrointestinal illness.

Just Posted

Art takes a personal tone during the 110th anniversary of the Victoria Sketch Club

The 47th annual art show is taking place until March 24

How a scrawny kid from Oak Bay bulked into one of rugby sevens’ best

Doing it for Dylan, Oak Bay’s Connor Braid at the top of his game

Used books on sale at Nellie McClung library branch in Saanich this weekend

Admission of $10 Sunday afternoon when all books are free

Almost 150 hectares purchased for parks in the CRD

Capital Regional District purchases two sites to increase park connectivity

After mosque attacks, New Zealand bans ‘military-style’ guns

The gunman killed 50 in a Christchurch mosque

POLL: When do you think the next major earthquake will hit Vancouver Island?

According to seismologists, Vancouver Island is overdue for a magnitude 7 earthquake.… Continue reading

Baby left alone in vehicle in Walmart parking lot

Williams Lake RCMP issue warning after attending complaint at Walmart Wednesday

Nowhere to grieve: How homeless people deal with loss during the opioid crisis

Abbotsford homeless advocate says grief has distinct challenges for those living on the streets

ICBC shifts to Alberta model, with higher rates, private insurers say

B.C. public insurance includes funding enforcement, driver licensing

B.C., feds accused of ‘environmental racism’ over Site C, Mount Polley

Amnesty International Canada says governments failed to recognize threats to Indigenous peoples

New Leger polls suggests federal Liberals lagging Conservatives

Overall, 31 per cent of respondents polled said they would vote for Justin Trudeau’s Liberals

Most Read