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Delaware Health Alert Network #138

July 20, 2007 7:07 pm

Health Alert

The Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) is alerting the Delaware medical community of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) notice advising persons not to eat 10 ounce cans of Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce, Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce and Kroger Hot Dog Chili Sauce.

Public health officials in Indiana, Texas, and CDC are investigating an outbreak of botulism associated with commercially-canned hot dog chili sauce. Foodborne botulism is a rare but serious paralytic illness caused by consuming foods that contain botulinum toxin, a nerve toxin produced by Clostridium botulinum.

Delaware currently does not have any reported cases of foodborne botulism.

CDC and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are advising persons not to eat 10 ounce cans of Castleberry’s Hot Dog Chili Sauce (UPC 3030000101), Austex Hot Dog Chili Sauce (UPC 3030099533), and Kroger Hot Dog Chili Sauce (UPC 1111083942) with “best by” dates from April 30, 2009 through May 22, 2009, due to possible contamination with botulinum toxin. Other foods that should be discarded are cans of the recalled product with missing or unreadable “best by” dates, foods that may have been prepared with a recalled product, and canned hot dog chili sauce of an unknown brand.

CDC OutbreakNet (the network of epidemiologists and other public health officials, facilitated by CDC, who investigate outbreaks of foodborne, waterborne, and other enteric illnesses nationwide) staff shared this information with colleagues at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). After being informed about the outbreak by the FDA, the company that manufactures Castleberry’s brand Hot Dog Chili Sauce issued a voluntary recall on July 18, 2007.

Signs and symptoms of botulism include double vision, blurred vision, drooping eyelids, slurred speech, difficulty swallowing, dry mouth, and muscle weakness. If untreated, the illness may progress from head to toe, with paralysis of the face, arms, breathing muscles, trunk, and legs. Paralysis of the breathing muscles can lead to death unless prompt medical care is sought. Symptoms generally begin 18 to 36 hours after eating a contaminated food, but they can occur as early as 6 hours or as late as 10 days.

Persons with any of these symptoms who have eatenCastleberry’s brand Hot Dog Chili Sauceor any of the recalled products are advised to immediately contact their health care provider.

Health care providers evaluating persons who have signs or symptoms of botulism should ask about consumption of chili sauce and should immediately notify DPH, Epidemiology Program at 302-744-4541 or 1-888-295-5156.

For further information visit or contact DPH, Epidemiology at 302-744-4541 or 1-888-295-5156.

Categories of Health Alert messages:

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  • Health Advisory: Provides important information for a specific incident or situation; may not require immediate action.
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