Source of Salmonella outbreak still unknown in B.C. and five other provinces

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      According to the federal government, there have been 63 lab-confirmed cases of Salmonella enteritidis illness in six provinces, including 23 in British Columbia.

      Two people have died, though it's unclear whether Salmonella was the cause, and 18 have been hospitalized between November 2018 and March 2019. And the cause is still unknown.

      Salmonella can be spread through poor food-handling practices.

      "It is possible that more recent illnesses may be reported in the outbreak because there is a period of time between when a person becomes ill and when the illness is reported to public health officials," the Public Health Agency of Canada states on its website. "For this outbreak, the illness reporting period is between four and five weeks."

      The Canadian Food Inspection Agency is conducting an investigation but to date, there have been no food recalls linked to this Salmonella outbreak.

      The bacterium, salmonellosis, affects the intestinal tract, according to the Mayo Clinic. Many people have no symptoms but others can develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps.

      Other symptoms include vomiting, fever, chills, headache, blood in the stool, and nausea.

      "In some cases, the diarrhea associated with salmonella infection can be so dehydrating as to require prompt medical attention," the Mayo Clinic states. "Life-threatening complications also may develop if the infection spreads beyond your intestines. Your risk of acquiring salmonella infection is higher if you travel to countries with poor sanitation."