October 1, 1999
HEPATITIS A PROTECTION RECOMMENDED FOR SOME PATRONS OF CASEYVILLE FAST FOOD RESTAURANT
SPRINGFIELD, IL The Illinois Department of Public Health today announced that persons who ate at a Caseyville Hardees restaurant on Thursday (Sept. 23) or Friday (Sept. 24) may need to receive a shot of immune globulin for protection against hepatitis A.
A cook at the Hardee's, which is located just north of Interstate 64 on Illinois 157, has been identified with hepatitis A. Hepatitis A can be spread by close personal contact with, or eating food prepared by, an infected food handler who does not wash his or her hands thoroughly after having a bowel movement.
Dr. John R. Lumpkin, state public health director, said that immune globulin is more than 85 percent effective in preventing hepatitis A if given within 14 days of exposure.
Persons who ate certain foods -- all sandwiches, all breakfast foods, peach cobbler, mashed potatoes and apple turnovers -- between 5:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Sept. 23 or 24 may have been exposed and should contact a physician, hospital or local health department for immune globulin. IDPH and local health department staff met with Hardee's management Friday to determine the cook's work schedule and the food he prepared.
Immune globulin will be available beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, Oct. 4, at the East Side Health District, 650 N. 20th St., East St. Louis; the Madison County Health Department, 2119 Troy Road, Edwardsville; and the St. Clair County Health Department, #19 Public Square, Suite 150, Belleville. Health departments throughout the state also will be able to provide immune globulin.
Since travelers from others states could have eaten at the fast food restaurant, the Department is notifying state health departments throughout the nation about the potential exposure to hepatitis A.
Hepatitis A is a viral infection that causes inflammation of the liver and occurs 15 days to 50 days after exposure to an infected person. Symptoms may include loss of appetite, tiredness, nausea and vomiting and in many infected persons, yellowing of the skin or the whites of the eyes. Diarrhea is usually not present with this disease but, when it is present, the risk of transmitting the virus to others is increased.
Most people recover without any complications, but on rare occasions hepatitis A can be fatal. Children with hepatitis A often do not have symptoms, but can transmit the virus to others if hands are not thoroughly washed.
Hepatitis A is contracted through the mouth and excreted in the stool. It can be spread by close personal contact with infected persons, or by eating or drinking food or beverages handled by an infected person.
Although immune globulin can be effective in preventing illness due to the hepatitis A virus, it does not kill the virus. Persons who have been exposed should wash their hands thoroughly after having a bowel movement to prevent transmission to others.
of Public Health
535 West Jefferson Street
Springfield, Illinois 62761
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