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Two cases of E. coli confirmed in Austria

Published on 27/05/2011

Two German tourists have been hospitalised in Austria after becoming ill with the same potentially deadly food-borne bacteria which has infected more than 270 people in Germany, health authorities said Friday.

The two men, cyclists from Schleswig-Holstein in northern Germany, have been confirmed to be infected with Enterohaemorrhagic E. coli, which causes the potentially fatal haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS), a health ministry spokesman told the Austrian news agency APA.

The men, currently being treated at an undisclosed hospital in Upper Austria, had spent two weeks cycling to Austria from north Germany before they came down with the symptoms three or four days ago, the spokesman said.

It was not yet clear how or when they became infected, but tests were currently being carried out to determine the exact strain and the results would be ready in two or three days.