gI_60540_MC-foodsafetylawfirmlogo.jpgE. coli lawyers at Marler Clark, the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of foodborne illness, have filed a lawsuit on behalf of St. Louis woman who allegedly contracted E. coli after eating romaine lettuce at a salad bar in a local Schnucks supermarket

Marler Clark, the nation’s leading law firm representing victims of E. coli outbreaks, along with St. Louis-based law firm Aleshire Robb & Sivils filed a lawsuit today on behalf of a St. Louis woman who was hospitalized with an E. coli O157:H7 infection after consuming romaine lettuce at a local Schnucks supermarket salad bar.

According to a complaint (#IISL-CC04859) filed in St. Louis County Circuit Court, Mary Kozlowski ate romaine lettuce at a Schnucks salad bar three times in October. By October 21, she began experiencing gastrointestinal symptoms indicative of an E. coli infection. Ms. Kozlowski was admitted to Mercy Hospital on October 27. Her condition continued to deteriorate and she developed hemolytic uremic syndrome (HUS), a serious complication of an E. coli infection that caused her kidneys to fail. Ms. Kozlowski was also treated for anemia, an irregular heartbeat, severe fluid retention, and a pulmonary embolism. Ms. Kozlowski was released from the hospital on November 7; however, the complaint alleges that she still suffers ongoing symptoms related to her illness and has sustained permanent damage to her kidneys.

“My client has endured a great deal of terror, pain, and suffering,” said Kozlowski’s attorney William Marler. “When you purchase food, you believe it may do a number of things – provide nourishment, taste good, or even just fill you up. What you don’t intend is for that food to endanger your life.”

Ms. Kozlowski’s illness is one of at least 60 E. coli illnesses associated with what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is calling a 10-state E. coli outbreak linked to romaine lettuce used in salad bars in various Schnucks stores. According to a CDC report published December 7, the romaine lettuce came from a single source, though neither Schnucks nor the CDC has released its name. The romaine lettuce was also served at universities in Minnesota and Missouri.