Ukraine – HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF FROM BOTULISM IN SUMMER

PHC

Since the beginning of the week, six people with a previous diagnosis of botulism have been hospitalized in different regions of Ukraine – Volyn, Chernihiv, Zhytomyr, Rivne, Kherson and Kyiv. Among the causes of the disease, experts from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention call the use of fried and dried river fish of their own cooking or unknown production, home canned food. 

We remind you that botulism is a food poisoning that can lead to serious consequences. In summer, when the air temperature rises, you should pay attention to the conditions of storage and cooking. Therefore, to protect against botulism, you should avoid the following products if you have doubts about their quality and storage / transportation conditions:  

  • dried, smoked, salted and canned fish;
  • canned meat and mushrooms;
  • home canned food.

Symptoms of botulism:

  • visual impairment – you can’t read the text, but you can see objects well;
  • severe dry mouth;
  • difficult to speak (voice becomes quiet, hoarse or disappears);
  • increased fatigue, muscle weakness;
  • dizziness;
  • short-term signs of damage to the digestive system (nausea, vomiting, weak stools), and then – the stage of intestinal paresis (bloating, constipation);
  • lesions of the muscles of the neck and limbs.

Symptoms of botulism often appear gradually, without sharp rises in temperature, so there is an illusion of frivolity. Later there is a visual impairment – one of the first signs of botulism. At the same time there is thirst, dryness of the mucous membranes, swallowing disorders, may change the tone of voice. Patients complain of a feeling of “lump” in the throat, pain when swallowing, sore throat.

Neurological symptoms last for several days and are accompanied by a general toxic syndrome – patients complain of severe headache, dizziness, insomnia, general weakness, fever. In severe cases, patients are concerned about the feeling of shortness of breath. Respiratory failure develops, which is the cause of death in botulism.

At the slightest suspicion of botulism, see a doctor immediately! 

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