State Cheer Competition Illness Outbreak Affects Nearly 200 Statewide

Update to Tuesday’s Story.  From the Washington State Department of Health: 

“Preliminary survey results show at least 192 reported illnesses around Washington during or after the state high school cheerleading tournament at Everett’s Comcast Arena on February 4th.  The cause and specific disease are still under investigation.

Symptoms include vomiting and diarrhea.  While most people have recovered, 30 attendees have reported seeking medical treatment.  The Washington State Department of Health is leading the disease investigation, working with local health partners and the event sponsor, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association.  As part of the investigation, questionnaires were sent to participants and their families and stool samples are being collected for testing at the state Public Health Laboratories.  People who attended the event and have severe symptoms are advised to contact a health care provider.”

According the WIAA, more than 3,000 people attended the event and more than 1,000 competed in the State Cheerleading and Salute to Spirit in Cheer and Dance/Drill, including Mount Si High School who had six cheerleaders fall ill after the event.

Intestinal illnesses can be caused by several viruses and bacteria that may come from a wide variety of sources.  Symptoms typically include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea.  Symptoms may include headaches, stomach cramps and fever.  As with many illnesses, good personal hygiene including frequent hand washing is an important tool to prevent the spread of disease.

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