Contaminated lettuce linked to canal water - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Three Mahoning County women became ill

Contaminated lettuce linked to canal water

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WASHINGTON -

Polluted canal water may have been the reason 210 people, including three from the Mahoning Valley, became victims of an E. Coli outbreak earlier this year.

The Centers For Disease Control issued what it's calling a "Final Update" on the outbreak that struck people in 36 states, hospitalizing 96 people and causing five deaths between March and June.

Three of the cases involved women from Mahoning County. Two of those women were hospitalized but later released.

Ohio's four other cases were in Summit County.

Although the outbreak was linked to romaine lettuce grown near Yuma, Arizona, the CDC announced on Thursday that the same strain of E. Coli was found in canal water in the same region.  

The Food and Drug Administration is still trying to find out how the bacteria got into the water and the lettuce.

Although the government did not issue a recall, health officials were advising people to avoid eating romaine lettuce.  That advisory has since been lifted.

Most people infected with E. coli develop diarrhea (often bloody), severe stomach cramps and vomiting. Most people recover within one week.

Some illnesses last longer and can be more severe, resulting in a type of kidney failure.

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