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Over 150 Harborview employees possibly exposed to dangerous bacteria

Harborview Medical Center. (KIRO Radio)

Harborview Medical Center confirms that 158 employees are receiving treatment after a potential exposure to brucella, a bacteria that can cause the infectious disease, brucellosis.

The exposure occurred in an operating room and a laboratory at Harborview in late June. A patient was admitted for an urgent operation and later tests revealed that person had brucellosis. On June 24, doctors said, a lab worker dropped a test tube with the brucella bacteria in it, potentially exposing lab workers.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, initial symptoms can include fever, sweats, headach, and pain in muscles, joints or the back.

The CDC states that some symptoms may persist for longer periods of time or never go away, including recurrent fevers, arthritis, swelling of the heart and neurological symptoms.

Written by Linzi Sheldon

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