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What is shellfish poisoning?

There are four different types of sickness classified as shellfish poisoning. Each occurs because of toxins eaten by the organisms the shellfish ingested. They are as follows:

  • Diarrheal shellfish poisoning- The most common form, this lasts about a day. Symptoms include vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhea. Noticed about a half hour after eating affected shellfish.
  • Paralytic shellfish poisoning: The most serious type of poisoning, with fatalities in about 12 percent of cases. Causes immediate numbness and tingling in the mouth and can paralyze lungs, causing death, in roughly two hours.
  • Neurotoxic shellfish poisoning: Confuses your nervous system, causing dizziness, achy muscles and a feeling of pinpricks on the skin.
  • Amnesic shellfish poisoning: Highly serious, with symptoms similar to diarrheal shellfish poisoning, it can cause disorientation, permanent memory loss and dementia.

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