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Clin Toxicol (Phila). 2011 Oct;49(8):752-4. doi: 10.3109/15563650.2011.606222.

One collective case of type A foodborne botulism in Corsica.

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Réanimation polyvalente, Centre hospitalier général, 20600 Bastia, France.


Foodborne botulism is rare in 21st century Western Europe. The purpose of this report is to describe a collective case of type A botulism caused by ingestion of artisanal-produced food (canned green beans and/or salted roast pork). Five of the seven persons who shared the meal presented signs of severe intoxication leading to the fatal respiratory failure in one 18-year-old girl. Three patients required mechanical ventilation for durations ranging from 37 to 78 days and developed severe infectious, respiratory and/or psychiatric complications. In 4 out of the 5 patients, trivalent antitoxin was administered between days 2 and 7 but did not avoid the need for long-term intubation/mechanical ventilation. Treatment with 3,4-diaminopyridine was ineffective in the 26-year-old man who required long-term breathing assistance. This case of collective foodborne botulism illustrates the potential severity of this hazard.

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