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US outbreak of hepatitis caused by a smoothie with strawberries

In the US, 55 people have fallen ill with hepatitis A after drank a smoothie with frozen strawberries from Egypt. On Wednesday August 31, CNN reported, referring to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

According to the TV channel, Lenta.ru reports, a massive outbreak of the disease occurred in six states: the first cases were detected in Virginia, 44 people fell ill there, four each in Maryland and West Virginia, one each in North Carolina, Oregon and Wisconsin. The patients' age is from 15 to 68 years.

CDC spokeswoman Nora Spencer-Loveall said that the disease has a fairly long incubation period, from 15 to 50 days, and the first symptoms began to appear in May, but until recently, doctors could not identify the source of the infection.

To date, epidemiologists have found that all the sick drank smoothies with berries imported from Egypt, served in the Tropical Smoothie Cafe. The chain's owners then removed imported strawberries from the menu and purchased new batches from other suppliers.

Hepatitis A is an acute liver infection caused by a virus that is transmitted through contaminated food and water. It does not have a chronic stage and does not provoke permanent liver damage. After the infection enters the body, the immune system begins to produce the necessary antibodies. Having had hepatitis A once, a person no longer becomes infected with it.

To prevent infection, you need to get vaccinated. The hepatitis A virus vaccine is considered effective for prevention worldwide.

Smoothie (smoothie, from English smooth - "smooth, soft") is a thick drink made from crushed berries, fruits or vegetables with the addition of juice or milk.

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