CDC Issues Warning Of Deadly Mushrooms Linked To Poisonings

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Over a dozen people in California have been poisoned by dangerous wild “death cap” mushrooms –  including some who required liver transplants and a toddler who suffered permanent brain damage, says a new report.

The deadly spore, called Amanita phalloides,  is believed to be the world’s most dangerous mushroom. The mushroom is often confused with perfectly edible straw and Caesar’s mushrooms.

Last year, Fourteen people were sickened after a bumper crop of the mushrooms, caused by abundant rainfall and warm weather, popped up in the greater San Francisco Bay Area, says a study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report that was published Friday.

Three had to undergo liver transplants, including an 18-month-old child, who ate just half a mushroom cap. The girl was left with permanent brain damage.

The baby’s mother said the toxic ‘mushrooms were given to her by a “person she did not know, who reportedly picked them earlier in the day in the mountains,” the study said.

The mom grilled the mushrooms for her husband, their young daughter, her sister and a friend — who all had nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea within the next day.

The death cap’s amatoxins — toxic compounds — are able to withstand heat from cooking and can quickly damage cells in the body once eaten.

Others who got ill ranged in age from 19 to 93, and each one ate varying quantities of the mushroom, including a “shot” of mushroom juice and as many as 8 caps.

A 37-year-old man who’d picked 2 wild mushrooms in Santa Rosa was hospitalized for 6 days after eating just 1, says the study.

Coma and death occurred in more than 50 percent of those poisoned.

Death cap poisonings have been reported in the California, Oregon and New York areas.

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