Another Mid-Michigan county has been added to the growing list of counties in Michigan experiencing an outbreak of hepatitis A.
The Central Michigan District Health Department is reporting that since September 2017, Isabella County has had four cases of acute hepatitis A, and officials say there is a link to the outbreak occurring in Southeastern Michigan.
One of the cases in Isabella County occurred in a food handler at Meijer that prompted a warning for anyone who ate baked goods from that store.
None of the other cases were related to that one, causing officials to group the cases in with the outbreak further south.
So far, more than 500 cases have been reported in Southeastern Michigan.
Prior to this year, Isabella County had not had a case of hepatitis A since 2011.
Handwashing is one of the best ways to reduce your risk of getting hepatitis A and other diseases, according to medical officials.
“Hepatitis A is spread by the fecal-oral route,” states Dr. Jennifer Morse, Medical Director for Central Michigan District Health Department. “This means you can get ill if you eat, drink, or touch your mouth with any food, drink, object, or your hands that may have been in contact with stool (poop) from someone infected with hepatitis A. Washing your hands thoroughly after using the bathroom and before handling or eating food can help prevent this.”
There is also a vaccination for hepatitis A.
Symptoms of hepatitis A can include fever, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea, abdominal pain, dark urine, and yellowing of the skin and eyeballs.
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