Woman Dies of Hepatitis A after Consuming Recalled Pomegranate
An Australian woman, 64, has died after consuming frozen pomegranates. Her death was linked to Hepatitis A. The frozen pomegranates were grown in Egypt and marketed by Creative Gourmet. Just two months ago, about 2,000 packets of the pomegranate arils were recalled due to infection, but health authorities say only 226 packets were recovered from the public.
The unnamed woman consumed some of the frozen pomegranate arils contaminated with Hepatitis A and which were intended to be returned as per recall instructions.
Paddy Phillips, chief medical officer in South Australia, warns that people should double-check their freezers for remnants of the contaminated pomegranates or any other affected products and dispose of them immediately. According to him, most people infected with Hepatitis A recover within a few weeks, and the woman’s death is the only casualty “linked to this recalled product nationally to date.”
In New South Wales, health officials recorded 24 cases of Hepatitis A all linked to the frozen pomegranates, Newsweek wrote. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that up to 4,000 new cases of Hepatitis A infections are reported annually in the U.S. Apart from Hepatitis A, there are other diseases within the same viral disease group such as Hepatitis B, C, D and E.
What is Hepatitis A?
Hepatitis A is a disease that causes inflammation of the liver. It is caused by a virus or toxin. It spreads easily via contact with fecal matter. The liver infection caused by the disease can be very deadly where it makes the liver to stop working. Health authorities, however, say “life-threatening complications such as liver failure affect just one in 250 people who contract Hepatitis A,” the Insider reports.
Symptoms of the disease include –
- Yellowing of the skin
- Dark urine
- Pale stools
- Loss of appetite
How to Protect Yourself from Contracting Hepatitis A
Health authorities say that the disease is very common in countries with poor sanitary conditions where contaminated fecal matter is the primary means of infection. The disease can equally be transmitted via contaminated food and water, and there have been cases where infection occurs via unprotected sex.
You can protect yourself and your household by adhering to the following advice –
- Maintain cleanliness and quality hygiene at all times
- Always return or dispose of products listed for immediate recall
- Thoroughly cook vegetables and other products that require deep cooking
- Wash your hands thoroughly and as frequently as possible
- Practice safe sex at all times
- Vaccinate all children against Hepatitis A at the age of one