The recent salmonella outbreak has affected 47 more individuals, this time linked to products containing the Southeast Asian plant kratom, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said Thursday. The latest number brings the total of salmonella infected cases to a total of 87 from 35 states.

No deaths have been reported so far, but health officials said 27 people required hospitalization due to illness caused by the infection. The latest affected individuals are from Alaska, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Nevada, Texas, and West Virginia — the eight states joining this outbreak.

Kratom — also known as Thang, Kakuam, Thom, Ketom, and Biak — is a plant used as a dietary supplement in the form of pills, powders, capsules and tea made of ground-up leaves from the plant. According to the CDC, Kratom has opioid properties and some stimulant-like effects. It is also used by some people to treat pain and anxiety or increase energy.

Common side effects of Kratom consumption include nausea, vomiting, and constipation, but severe ones may include respiratory depression, seizure, addiction, and psychosis.

"The investigation has expanded to include outbreak strains from three additional serotypes of Salmonella: Salmonella Javiana, Salmonella Okatie, and SalmonellaThompson," the CDC said in its report. "The same strains of Salmonella Okatie and Salmonella Thompson were found in samples collected from kratom and from ill people."

Federal health investigators spoke with 55 of the patients from the latest outbreak of which 40 reported consumption of kratom pills, tea or powder before the start of their symptoms. 

"Despite the information collected to date about where ill people purchased kratom, a single common brand or supplier of kratom has not been linked to the outbreak," the CDC said Thursday.

Salmonella was detected this year in leftover kratom powder from people who had become sick in North Dakota and Utah. Three samples sold online tested positive for salmonella earlier this month. 

CDC recommended people "not consume any brand of kratom in any form because the source of salmonella contamination has not been identified."

kratom-leaves U.S. officials have linked a salmonella outbreak across the U.S. to kratom, a plant that is used to treat pain and anxiety and acts like an opioid. Photo: CC BY-SA 3.0

Salmonellosis and its symptoms:

Salmonellosis is a type of food poisoning caused by the Salmonella enterica bacterium, which is mostly caused by eating food contaminated by salmonella. Salmonellaserotype typhimurium and Salmonella serotype enteritidis are the most common types in the U.S. Salmonellosis is more common in the summer than in the winter. Symptoms of salmonella can begin 12 to 72 hours after a person is infected. In rare cases, complications from salmonella can become deadly.

Most of the symptoms of a salmonella infection is stomach-related.

  • Cramps in your stomach
  • Bloody stools
  • Diarrhea
  • Cold and chills
  • Fever
  • Headache
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea