2012 E. coli Outbreak Linked to Organic Spinach and Spring Mix Blend – Signs and Symptoms

Multistate Outbreak of Shiga Toxin-producing Escherichia coli O157:H7 Infections Linked to Organic Spinach and Spring Mix Blend (Final Update)

Posted December 10, 2012 4:30 PM ET

This particular outbreak appears to be over. However, E. coli is still an important cause of human illness in the United States. More information about E. coli, and steps people can take to reduce their risk of infection, can be found on the CDC E. coli Web Page.

Clinical Features

  • People usually get sick from STEC 2 to 8 days (an average of 3 to 4 days) after eating contaminated food. Most people infected with STEC O157 develop diarrhea (usually watery and often bloody) and abdominal cramps. Most illnesses end on their own within 7 days. Some illnesses last longer and can be more severe.
  • Most people recover within a week but, rarely, some develop a more severe infection. Hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a type of kidney failure, can begin as the diarrhea is improving. HUS can occur in people of any age but is most common in children under 5 years old and the elderly.