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Hepatitis A Cases Reach 14

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April 25, 2008

The San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency provides the following update on the Hepatitis A outbreak for April 25.

Hepatitis A Outbreak

  • Two additional cases of Hepatitis A linked to possible exposure at a Chipotle restaurant in La Mesa have been reported to the San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) Community Epidemiology Branch.
  • Total number of cases related to this outbreak: 14. Age range: 23 – 55. 6 females, 8 males.
  • Restaurant employees who have been tested do not have recent Hepatitis A infection.

Recommendations

  • The County recommends that individuals who dined at the restaurant between March 1 and April 22, 2008 - and are symptomatic for Hepatitis A - see their physician to be screened for the illness.
  • Good hygiene practices, including washing hands or the use of hand sanitizer after using the bathroom, changing diapers, and before preparing and eating food, are important to prevent the spread of Hepatitis A.

What is Hepatitis A?

  • Hepatitis A is commonly transmitted when an object contaminated with the stool of someone with Hepatitis A comes in contact with another person’s mouth.
  • Exposure also can take place when an individual consumes food or water contaminated with the Hepatitis A virus.
  • Symptoms include fever, fatigue, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal discomfort, dark urine, and jaundice. Hepatitis A does not become chronic; symptoms usually last less than 2 months.
  • In 2007, there were 82 cases of Hepatitis A in San Diego County. To date in 2008, there have been 40 cases of Hepatitis A in San Diego County, including the 14 cases related to this outbreak.
  • This last major Hepatitis A outbreak in San Diego County was in 2000.

For More Information

  • Individuals with no medical provider, or anyone who would like more information, may call the County Epidemiology Branch at (619) 515-6620.
  • Information about Hepatitis A vaccine may be obtained from the HHSA Immunizations Branch at (619) 692-8661. Those with a medical provider should check with their doctor about getting inoculated.
  • More information is also available at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site.