Health alert at southeast Dallas restaurant

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by MARCUS MOORE

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WFAA

Posted on February 8, 2012 at 10:59 PM

Updated Thursday, Feb 9 at 9:33 AM

Gonzalez Restaurant

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DALLAS — The Dallas County Health and Human Services Department is investigating a case of hepatitis A at a Dallas Mexican food restaurant.

The agency is working to contact people who may have eaten at Gonzalez Restaurant, 8121 Bruton Road, between January 25-28. The restaurant is located near the corner of Bruton and Buckner Boulevard in southeast Dallas.

An employee who was diagnosed with hepatitis A went to work and may have come in contact with customers.

"It's fairly uncommon that we get this type of situation," said Dr. Wendy Chung, the health department's chief epidemiologist.

The agency is working to alert medical care providers to be on the lookout for any customers who may have been infected. Dr. Chung said the risk that the infection has spread is very low.

"The vast majority who may contract hepatitis A will recover just fine without any serious problems," Chung noted.

Hepatitis A is an infection that attacks the liver. Symptoms include fever, nausea, vomiting, and — in some cases — yellowing of the skin.

"It's very important, in terms of preventing the spread of hepatitis A, to engage in extremely good hand-washing," Chung said.

Health officials say restaurant management has been working closely with the county during the investigation, and has done everything right. That is reassuring to regular customers of Gonzalez Restaurant, like Sam Mubarak, whose auto repair shop is right next door.

"It's clean and nice food; I love it," he said. "Everybody eats there, at least once or twice a week."

Mubarak said it is one of his favorite places to eat — and that hasn't changed.

E-mail mmoore@wfaa.com

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