HEALTH ALERT! CDC Confirms Nine Cases of Parasitic Infection From Bear Meat Consumption


According to a report from the Centers for Disease and Prevention, brain worms were contracted by family members from three distinct states as a result of consuming bear flesh kebobs.

According to the May 23 report, a 2022 family gathering in South Dakota was attended by nine family members from three states (Arizona, Minnesota, or South Dakota).

The bear was harvested in northern Saskatchewan by one of the family members. Before being prepared and utilized for kebabs, the meat was preserved in a freezer for over a month. The family member was instructed by a hunting outfitter to refrigerate the meat to eliminate parasites, according to the report.

Nevertheless, the CDC report indicates that the larvae and worms that were subsequently identified in the meat and family members are freeze-resistant. The meat was inadvertently served undercooked at the family gathering, despite the fact that it was grilled alongside vegetables. The meat was recooked and re-served after a few attendees had consumed it initially.

According to health officials, the meat may have already contaminated the other food that was served, even though three of the affected family members claimed to have only ingested vegetables at the meal.

A few weeks later, in July 2022, one of the family members was hospitalized due to severe muscle soreness, edema around the eyes, and a fever, as explained by the CDC. Trichinellosis was diagnosed by his physicians.

Trichinellosis is a roundworm infection that is typically contracted by consuming raw or uncooked flesh that has been contaminated with the parasite trichinella. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), its larvae may originate from meat-eating animals such as bears, wild boars, and walruses.

7 additional family members, including a 12-year-old girl, were ultimately diagnosed with the worms. Three of the seven individuals were hospitalized and administered albendazole, a medication that eliminates worms, according to the CDC. Health officials reported that only six individuals were symptomatic, and all of them recovered.

A test was conducted on the remaining bear meat, and Trichinellosis larvae were identified.

The CDC emphasizes that modern regulations have contributed to the reduction of the risk of trichinellosis, which was frequently caused by the consumption of undercooked or uncooked pork in the United States. Approximately 15 cases are confirmed annually on a national scale. According to the National Outbreak Reporting System, there were 15 outbreaks associated with trichinella between 2011 and 2021. Seven of those were located in Alaska, while the remaining were in California, Oregon, Idaho, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Maryland, and Virginia.

It is typically acquired by humans through the consumption of undercooked wild animals. The larvae can migrate to muscle tissue and organs, such as the brain, heart, lungs, and spinal cord, once they have entered the body, as per the Mayo Clinic. The infection is associated with a low incidence of complications.

Nausea, vomiting, headaches, and convulsions are among the more prevalent symptoms of trichinellosis. A small number of individuals who contract the worms do not exhibit any symptoms, as their immune systems eliminate them.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to 25% of black bears in Alaska and Canada may be infected. They recommend that the parasites responsible for trichinellosis be eliminated by cooking meat to an internal temperature of 165 degrees or higher. As the bear meat appeared to do with the vegetables, health officials also cautioned that uncooked meat can cross-contaminate other foods.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a presidential candidate, previously disclosed that he experienced cognitive impairments as a result of a parasitic worm consuming a portion of his brain. Kennedy previously disclosed to the New York Times that he was uncertain as to the source of his parasitic infection, but he believes it may have occurred during his travels.

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