Two men have been diagnosed with Huff Syndrome, known as black urine disease, after eating fish at a beach hut in Barakuru, on the coast of Ceará. In one of them, the disease developed more seriously, and the man was taken to the special hospital in Fortaleza, where he received the diagnosis.
Half disease is transmitted through toxins found in poorly packed fish and crustaceans. Photo: Fabian de Paula/SVM
Sales supervisor Marcelo Russo Holland says he and a friend were on a business trip when they stopped at a beach hut in Baracuro and ate a fish. Shortly thereafter, the two began developing symptoms of the disease. Marcelo’s friend, who received the same diagnosis, does the treatment at home.
“I ate a fish in a tent on the beach and it was contaminated with fish enzyme contaminated, a disease known as ‘black urine.’ My friend who was with me also had the same condition, so there were two people contaminated with the enzyme from Arabian fish,” says Marcello. He recorded a video clip talking about the condition of the hospital in which he enters the hospital.
Marcello has been in hospital since last Thursday (26). Inside him, the black urine disease turned out even worse because he had a kidney problem.
However, the Ceará State Department of Health (CISA) reports that it has not yet been notified of the cases and that, this year, no cases of ‘urinary disease’ have been officially confirmed.
The main suspicion is that Huff Syndrome is related to a poison that can appear in some fish, such as tampaki, eggs and arabian or crustaceans (lobster, lobster, shrimp), if they are not packaged properly.
Signs can appear between two and 24 hours after eating contaminated fish and may disappear within 72 hours.
It is not possible to look at a fish and know that it is contaminated, as the poison has no smell or color and does not change the appearance of the fish. Therefore, it is important for consumers to know whether the purchased fish is well preserved.
Patients should seek care
Health director Alvaro Madeira says that people who consume fish and begin to feel some symptoms of the disease, seek a hospital unit immediately.
“It occurs with the consumption of fish or crustaceans that have a toxin present there that has not been inactivated by the preparation. This toxin will penetrate the organism and lead to a series of organic processes, among which, the most pronounced change in muscle injury […] Madeira advises consulting a doctor if symptoms appear.”
Here are some tips before buying or eating fish
- Choose fish (fresh, chilled or frozen) at the end of shopping so you don’t leave it in your cart exposed to heat;
- When leaving the place of purchase, avoid transporting it for a long time, especially in the trunk of a car;
- If there is ice inside the package, this may be an indication that the product has thawed and re-frozen, which indicates problems with preservation;
- Do not refreeze previously thawed fish;
- Do not thaw fish at room temperature.
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