NJ: More test samples show cholera in Ocean City lagoon

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NJ: More test samples show cholera in Ocean City lagoon

By Associated Press, 9/14/2000 18:49

OCEAN CITY, N.J. (AP) A new round of tests in the cholera-tainted waters of a lagoon have confirmed the presence of the bacteria, authorities said.

Nine new samples taken in the lagoon at 17th Street all came up positive for Vibrio cholera non-01, one of 139 different strains of the intestinal disease.

One was sent to the federal Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta for further testing.

''We've pretty much established it's there in the waters,'' said Louis Lamanna, director of the Cape May County Health Department.

Vibrio cholera, common in warm brackish water, is not associated with the cholera epidemics experienced in developing Third World nations, health officials say.

The first round of tests was performed after an unidentified 30-year-old Ocean City man was treated for cholera last month. He was hospitalized but survived.

The man told officials he swam in the lagoon with his dog, but he also said he ate undercooked softshell crabs and raw clams shortly before being stricken.

As a result, Lamanna said, authorities may never determine where he contracted the sickness. Still, they plan to examine storm drains, sewage outfall pipes and boats to find out where the cholera came from, he said.

Swimming and fishing have been banned in the area since the discovery.


-- Carl Jenkins (Somewherepress@aol.com), September 15, 2000

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