Norovirus Infection: A Food Poisoning Injury Affecting Millions a Year
According to the Centers for Disease Control, of all viruses, only the common cold is reported more often than norovirus, which is often referred to as gastroenteritis or, more commonly the “stomach flu.” CDC figures estimate that the norovirus causes 23 million cases of gastroenteritis per year, and that’s more than half of all gastroenteritis cases in the U.S.
Like many other causes of fordborne illness, the norovirus is usually transmitted into out systems by consuming food or water that has been contaminated by feces, although this is one of the few that can also be transmitted from person to person. The most likely cause of a norovirus outbreak is improper food handling. Raw vegetables that are not washed properly, or undercooked meat and seafood are the most common sources for infection. It is not unusual for a norovirus infection to cause extended outbreaks, because they are easily transmitted and are resistant to common household disinfectants.
The incubation period for a norovirus is normally 24 to 48 hours, which is when symptoms usually begin to appear. For most people an infection only lasts 24 to 72 hours. The symptoms of norovirus infection can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and cramps, headaches and low-grade fever. In most cases the norovirus will run its course within a few days, but in some cases the symptoms themselves can be more severe, and lead to more serious medical problems. Occasionally, the norovirus can cause dehydration, malnutrition, and even death. Children, the elderly, and those with weakened immune systems, such as patients in hospitals and nursing homes, are more susceptible to complications from the virus than others.
If you suspect you may have contracted a norovirus infection, seek medical attention immediately. If you believe contaminated food caused your norovirus symptoms, you may be entitled to compensation for your illness. The attorneys at Hill Law Firm in San Antonio and Houston, Texas have experience taking on some of the largest companies in the United States in food borne illnesses cases. If you or a loved one has been injured or killed by food contamination, please call the Food Poisoning Injury Lawyers at Hill Law Firm immediately. It is important to move quickly to preserve evidence and your rights.