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Watch for Haff Disease: An Alert for Illinois Clinicians

 

Source:Medscape.

LaMar Hasbrouck, MD, MPH Director

LaMar Hasbrouck, MD, MPH Director

On February 4, the Illinois Poison Control Center reported two suspected cases of Haff disease in Chicago residents. Haff disease is a syndrome of unexplained rhabdomyolysis following consumption of certain types of fish. Both cases had consumed buffalo fish on February 1 from a fish market in suburban Cook County prior to their illness.

 

As part of this investigation, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Chicago Department of Health are trying to identify other possible cases of Haff disease. We are asking for your help in identifying any possible Haff disease cases in your jurisdiction in 2014. Please report any suspected cases of unexplained rhabdomyolysis in persons who consumed fish in the four to 21 hours prior to onset of illness to your local health department.

 

Within six to 21 hours of eating the fish, persons can experience rhabdomyolysis. Rhabdomyolysis is a clinical syndrome caused            by injury to skeletal muscle that results in release of muscle cell contents into the circulation. The person who has eaten            the fish may experience muscle tenderness, rigidity, and dark brown urine. Symptoms typically resolve within two to three            days and the case fatality rate is about 1%. Complications can include renal failure and disseminated intravascular coagulation.

In Illinois, one previous case of Haff disease was reported in 2004 in someone who ate buffalo fish from the Mississippi river.

As part of this investigation, the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Chicago Department of Health are trying            to identify other possible cases of Haff disease. We are asking for your help in identifying any possible Haff disease cases            in your jurisdiction in 2014. Please report any suspected cases of unexplained rhabdomyolysis in persons who consumed fish            in the four to 21 hours prior to onset of illness to your local health department.

For more information, read the full alert on Medscape.

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