Fish Markets Being Blamed for NYC Chinatown Skin Infection

Geo Beats
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Health authorities have issued a warning to residents and visitors in New York City who handle raw fish.


Health authorities have issued a warning to residents and visitors in New York City. There have been reports of people suffering from a rare skin infection.

They’re breaking out in lesions and encountering pain in their hands or arms shortly after handling raw fish. Thus far, 30 cases have been documented.

Doctors reported them all to the Health Department following the outbreak. The bacteria that causes the infection is called Mycobacterium marinum. It easily enters the body through a minor cut or opening in the skin.

The infections can be treated with antibiotics but if left untreated, surgery may be required. All of the cases pertain to fish that was purchased from vendors in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Queens.

Symptoms of Mycobacterium marinum include difficulty wiggling fingers, pain in the hands or arms and swelling underneath the skin. Health officials have asked people who think they may have contracted the infection to seek medical help immediately.

Anyone who purchases or prepares food from New York City’s Chinatown markets is urged to wear waterproof gloves as a precaution. It was pointed out, however, that eating cooked seafood poses no risk.

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