Suffering from Nestle Cookie Dough Outbreak Continues

Even though refrigerated Nestle Toll House Cookie Dough has been returned to store shelves, the <"">E. coli outbreak linked to the product is still taking a toll on some victims. According to a Washington Post report, some people allegedly sickened by the dough are still suffering, and at least one life hangs in the balance.

According to the Post, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) believes 80 people in 31 states became ill with E. coli after consuming raw refrigerated Nestle Toll House Cookie Dough. In June, Nestle recalled 3.6 million packages of the cookie dough.

One E. coli victim, a 57-year-old woman, has been confined in a Las Vegas hospital for 120 days. Her family says she had eaten some of the raw cookie dough prior to becoming ill.

According to the Post, the patient, a high school teacher’s aide and mother, suffered septic shock after her kidneys shut down. Her gallbladder and part of her colon have been removed. She is unable to speak, and her doctors fear that E. coli toxins have attacked her brain, the Post said. Her prognosis is uncertain.

Other victims of this E. coli outbreak include a 4-year-old girl from South Carolina who had a stroke and is partially paralyzed, the Post said. She, like several other victims, suffered from hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a serious complication of E. coli infection that affects the kidneys and can lead to death.

According to the Post, neither Nestle nor the FDA have determined how the cookie dough might have transmitted the E. coli infection. While the victims have reported eating the raw cookie dough, the strain of E. coli O157:H7 was not found at Danville, Virginia plant were the product was made. And E. coli that was found in samples of dough had a different genetic fingerprint than the strain responsible for illnesses.

On the advice of the FDA, the Post said Nestle has purchased new supplies of flour, eggs and margarine. Production at Danville resumed July 7, and the product was returned to store shelves last week. The new Nestle cookie dough now bears a “New Batch” label and a prominent warning against eating it raw, the Post said.

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