Minnesotan contracts Hepatitis A linked to Fresh Thyme blackberries

The patient was hospitalized but has since recovered.
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Fresh Thyme

Minnesota has reported its first case of Hepatitis A linked to a tainted batch of blackberries sold at grocery store chain Fresh Thyme.

The state was included in a warning across the Midwest after an outbreak of the disease was reported in Nebraska, Wisconsin and Indiana.

The number of confirmed cases is now 14, with a confirmed case in Michigan joining the patient from Minnesota in the total number.

The Minnesota patient was hospitalized and has since recovered.

The outbreak has been traced back to fresh, non-organic blackberries from Fresh Thyme grocery stores between Sept. 9-30.

Anyone who bought blackberries from Fresh Thyme stores around Minnesota between those dates and froze them to use during the holidays, have been advised to throw them away.

Fresh Thyme has nine stores in Minnesota, most of them in the Twin Cities metro.

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Hepatitis A is a virus that can cause liver disease, and has an incubation period of 30 days. Symptoms can include fever, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea, stomach pains and diarrhea, as well as yellowing skin or eyes, and dark urine.

The state says that the hepatitis A cases are separate from the outbreak of the disease primarily affecting Minnesotans experiencing "homelessness or unstable housing" and "people who use street drugs."

The best way to prevent hepatitis A, the Minnesota Department of Health says, is getting a vaccination, which has been recommended for children since 2006 but many adults have not been vaccinated.

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