555 East Steakhouse Hepatitis A Outbreak and Litigation - California (2019)


Food safety lawyers at Marler Clark represented two of the victims in this hepatitis A outbreak, achieving settlements covering medical expenses, wage loss, and pain and suffering. These cases have been successfully settled.

The Long Beach Department of Health and Human Services investigated an outbreak of hepatitis A associated with 555 East American Steakhouse in downtown Long Beach. Several cases of hepatitis A have been confirmed in individuals who ate at the restaurant on or around December 24, 2019.

On December 24, 2019, one of our clients dined at 555 East American Steakhouse in Long Beach, consuming a dinner of crab bisque, ribeye steak, baked potato and butter cake. He began experiencing symptoms on January 16, 2020, which included nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach cramps, muscle aches and fatigue. He initially attributed his symptoms to seasonal illness, but quickly learned that as his symptoms worsened, he suffered from something more serious. On Tuesday, January 21, 2020, our client sought medical care at Kaiser Hospital and was admitted for treatment where they determined that he had contracted hepatitis A. After two days he was discharged and continues to recover from his HAV infection and low liver function.

Hepatitis A is an infectious disease of the liver. It is transmitted person-to-person through the fecal-oral route or consumption of contaminated food or water. Most adults with hepatitis A have symptoms including fatigue, low appetite, stomach pain, dark urine, nausea, and jaundice (yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes). Once exposed to hepatitis A, if symptoms occur, they usually start appearing four weeks after exposure, but can occur as early as two and as late as seven weeks after exposure. Symptoms usually develop over a period of several days.

Those who contract the disease usually recover completely, but sometimes hepatitis A can lead to hospitalization and severe illness. It is very important that anyone with symptoms not go to work, especially if in food service, health care, or child-care, and consult their medical provider immediately.

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