3 children hospitalized for E. coli - WFSB 3 Connecticut

3 children hospitalized for E. coli

Posted: Updated:
Lebanon Farm Lebanon Farm

These children were sent to Connecticut Children’s Medical Center in Hartford after contracting a strain of E. coli following a recent visit to a dairy farm in Lebanon.

State health officials said they believe that at least a dozen adults and children who visited the Oak Leaf Farm have been infected by the bacteria, E.coli O157.

People can contract the bacteria by touching the infected animals. Visitors to petting zoos and farms are encouraged to wash their hands after touching the animals to reduce contracting bacteria.

”From what I understand they were encouraged to wash their hands,” Dr. Nick Bennett, an infectious disease specialist at Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, said. “There was hand sanitizer available, but with small children it’s super easy to have something on your hands and then put hands in their mouths.”

The bacteria is found in animal feces.

The symptoms for E.coli O157 can include

  • abdominal cramping
  • watery diarrhea
  • frequently bloody vomiting
  • low-grade fever

Oftentimes, E. coli is not life threatening, and many recover quickly after seeking medical attention. However, this particular strain, contracted by the people who visited the farm, is much more dangerous.

“The strain and the toxins it produces can cause problems with blood count and with kidney function and that may present several days later even after the diarrhea has started to improve,” Bennett said.

Health officials said there is no cure for E.coli, but strongly recommend that people wash their hands after coming in contact with farm animals. The treatment consists of fluids and electrolytes.

One child has been released from Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, however two remain at the hospital, officials said.

For more information on E.coli, click here

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