Is Frozen Fever Frozen 2

Frozen fruits can cause infectious diseases


By eating frozen food, especially fruit and vegetables, pathogens causing diarrhea and hepatitis can be transmitted ...

The consumption of contaminated frozen fruits can lead to the transmission of pathogenic germs. In the Federal Health Gazette (2/2007) an outbreak of diarrhea that occurred in a Hamburg company canteen is associated with the consumption of blackberry yoghurt and ice confectionery. Both desserts were prepared in the large kitchen from frozen blackberries and yoghurt. Apparently the fruits were infected with noroviruses. "We know that some pathogens that are transmitted through contaminated food are extremely temperature-resistant. Both in insufficiently cooked food and in the frozen state, many of these dangerous germs remain capable of reproduction and can thus trigger diseases. Unfortunately, only a few cases are well documented. In this respect, it is difficult to say how often infections actually originate from frozen foods, "explains Prof. Wolfgang Jilg, microbiologist from the University of Regensburg. According to the Robert Koch Institute, almost 90,000 people in Germany have been infected with noroviruses since the beginning of the year - about three times more than in the same period of the previous year. The majority of these infections occurred through direct human-to-human infection.

In addition to diarrhea pathogens, other viruses can also lurk in frozen foods - primarily fruit and vegetables. “There are several studies that show that hepatitis A viruses - the causative agents of infectious liver inflammation - can also be transmitted through frozen food. Jaundice outbreaks have occurred in the past from frozen raspberries, blueberries, strawberries and various vegetables. The consumption of unpeeled fruit, vegetables and salads that have come into contact with contaminated water can also trigger hepatitis A. Unfortunately, the consumer cannot distinguish between infected food and germ-free goods. Therefore, even in a 4-star hotel in countries with low hygiene standards, you are not necessarily protected from infection, "warns Jilg. Lately, virus diarrheal diseases have also been increasing on cruise ships: at the end of last year, almost 500 passengers on the" Freedom of the Seas "suffered severe diarrhea during a Caribbean cruise - the trigger: noroviruses.

Vaccination - the only protection

In order to protect against infections with noroviruses or other pathogens that are transmitted through contaminated food, experts recommend strict hygiene measures. “Family members very often get infected from one another. For example, if a child suffers from diarrhea, extreme hygiene is advisable - even if it has to be done quickly. In any case, hands should be cleaned thoroughly if you've come into contact with dirty clothes, vomit or stool remains, ”advises Jilg.

When traveling abroad to countries where hepatitis A - the so-called travel jaundice - is widespread, doctors recommend preventive vaccination. “While hepatitis diseases occur again and again in southern Italy, which can be traced back to the consumption of infected mussels and seafood, the sources of infection in other popular travel destinations cannot be so clearly delimited. In a hotel, the orange juice at the breakfast buffet can be just as contagious as the salad buffet. Since the virus is particularly widespread in developing countries, but also in many countries in southern and eastern Europe, most of the locals come into contact with this pathogen in the course of their lives. And so an infected worker helping with the harvest or working in a food factory can spread these highly contagious viruses. We therefore advise all tourists traveling to these destinations to have their vaccinations, "recommends Prof. Thomas Löscher from the Tropical Institute in Munich.

In addition to fever, nausea and general fatigue, the yellowing of the skin and eyes is typical for the disease. This "jaundice" is triggered by a malfunction of the infected liver - as a result, bile pigments are deposited in the skin. The symptoms usually subside within a few weeks - in severe cases, however, the illness can lead to a longer hospital stay and in rare cases - especially in the elderly or with previous liver damage - lead to death. There is no therapy against infection with hepatitis A viruses. A hepatitis A vaccination is possible shortly before the start of the journey. The protection has already built up after approx. 10-14 days. Due to the long incubation period (duration between infection and outbreak), even a "last-minute" vaccination shortly before departure provides protection. The vaccination itself is well tolerated and protects for at least 1-2 years Months, then offers long-term protection for at least 10 years.

First German health insurance company also pays for travel vaccinations

According to information from the Kaufmännische Krankenkasse (KKH) in Hanover, the costs for vaccinations during stays abroad - which also include vaccinations against hepatitis A - will be reimbursed for all those insured with KKH with immediate effect. In addition to vaccinations against jaundice (hepatitis A and B), the KKH states that it will also pay for travel vaccinations against yellow fever, TBE, meningococci, rabies, cholera and typhoid, as well as booster vaccinations against tetanus (tetanus), diphtheria and polio (poliomyelitis). According to its own information, the KKH has around 1.9 million insured persons.