Ciguatera poisoning strikes five

PUBLISHED : Monday, 04 July, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 04 July, 2005, 12:00am

Five people have developed suspected ciguatera poisoning after eating fish bought at the same market. All fell ill after eating moray eel, the Centre for Health Protection said last night.

The victims came from two parties that both consumed fish bought from the Shek Kip Mei Market on Friday. None required admission to hospital.

They developed ciguatera poisoning symptoms - numbness, diarrhoea, vomiting and abdominal pain - between two and eight hours after eating the fish.

The first group of patients, three women aged between 12 and 50, sought treatment at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. The other victims, a 43-year-old man and a 44-year-old woman, were treated at Caritas Medical Centre.

Health officials warned diners to take care when consuming large coral reef fish, since they could contain ciguatoxin.

Officials were last night trying to trace the source of the fish and to ascertain whether the victims had bought the fish from the same stall at the market.