Report: Disease caused by eating raw fish, like sushi, on the rise

Image courtesy of CNN

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON/CNN) — Sushi and seafood eaters should beware that a disease caused by consuming raw fish is on the rise.

According to a report published Friday, Anisakiasis, which is caused by eating parasite-contaminated fish or seafood, is on the rise in Western countries where eating sushi and other raw or undercooked fish and seafood dishes has gained popularity in recent years.

Experts say the disease is found in certain types of fish that have been contaminated by a parasite.

Image courtesy of CNN

The types of fish that can be affected are salmon, herring, cod, mackerel, halibut, red snapper, and some squid.

If left untreated, the gastric disease can lead to chronic, ulcer-like symptoms lasting for weeks to months. However, in most cases, the parasite dies before developing into an adult.

No drug has been identified that can kill the live parasites, but in some cases, surgical removal may be necessary.

To reduce your risk of getting ill, the FDA has safety programs and procedures that fish distributors are expected to follow.

Beyond just avoiding raw fish, the CDC says that fish and other seafood should be cooked to an internal temperature of at least 145° F (about 63° C).

Image courtesy of CNN

For those not looking to give up sushi, Dr. Joana Carmo, lead author and physician in the gastroenterology department of the Hospital of Egas Moniz in Lisbon, Portugal, said that there is hope.

“Properly trained sushi chefs can detect anisakis larvae,” Carmo said. “They are grossly visible in the fish.”

This is a developing story. Stay with 8News online and on air for the latest updates.

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