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Health officials investigate potential Hepatitis A link with Whole Foods in Detroit

2 cases of Hepatitis A prompt investigation

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DETROIT – The Detroit Health Department is investigating two cases of Hepatitis A in connection with the prepared foods section at the Whole Foods Market at 115 Mack Avenue in Detroit, officials said.

One case was diagnosed in an employee at the store who handles and prepared food at the store.

The second case was diagnosed in a Detroit resident who ate at the prepared foods section of the store.

What is Hepatitis A? Click here to read Dr. Frank McGeorge's explanation.

It's unclear how either case was contracted, officials said. It's possible the second case might have been contracted from the food handler, health officials said.

The Detroit Health Department recommends anyone who ate prepared foods from the Whole Foods in Detroit between Oct. 6 and Oct. 12 to speak with a doctor.

"While it remains unclear exactly how either of these individuals contracted Hepatitis A, and we know that Whole Foods Market Detroit has a comprehensive food safety protocol, we want to do our best to protect our residents and those of surrounding communities who may have been exposed. Whole Foods has been nothing but cooperative throughout this process," said Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, executive director and health officer at the Detroit Health Department.

Hepatitis A is a contagious liver disease that results from infection with the Hepatitis A virus. It is usually spread when a person ingests contaminated food or drink. Symptoms include fever, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, abdominal, yellow eyes and skin, as well as dark urine.

Officials said many people who have Hepatitis A may not have symptoms. If symptoms do occur, they can range in severity from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a severe illness lasting several months.

Anyone experiencing these symptoms should seek medical attention immediately. In over 99 percent of cases, the body clears the disease without any long term consequences, officials said.