ST. PAUL (WJON News) - The Minnesota Department of Health is investigating an outbreak of Salmonella in the Twin Cities.

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The M-D-H says five illnesses caused by Salmonella have been reported in children aged three months to ten years old. The families of two children reported drinking unpasteurized milk, also known as raw milk. One of the children was infected with two types of E. coli in addition to Salmonella.

Unpasteurized milk is milk that hasn’t been heated to a temperature high enough to kill harmful germs, like E. coli and Salmonella, sometimes found in the milk.

People infected with Salmonella Typhimurium can develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps from 6 hours to several days after consuming contaminated foods or touching infected animals. The illness typically lasts from 4 to 7 days. In some instances, people may get so sick that they may need to be hospitalized. Children under age 5, adults over age 65, and those with weakened immune systems are most at risk for severe illness and hospitalization.

Maria Bye is a senior epidemiologist in the Zoonotic Diseases Unit at MDH.

Even healthy animals can carry these germs and have them in their milk. Consuming any unpasteurized milk is risky, no matter how clean the operation from which it is purchased.” “If you have raw or unpasteurized milk in your refrigerator, please do not consume it. If you have developed gastrointestinal illness after consuming unpasteurized milk, contact your healthcare provider.

The M-D-H is working to identify the source of the milk. If you have had gastrointestinal illness shortly after drinking raw milk at the end of June or the beginning of July, you’re asked to fill out a confidential survey. Find the survey by clicking here.



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