Thursday, August 2, 2007 - Page updated at 12:00 AM

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New Mexico man with botulism paralyzed

The Associated Press

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — A New Mexico man is paralyzed from botulism poisoning, and state health officials said Wednesday they were trying to determine if he ate canned food involved in a nationwide recall.

Castleberry's Food has recalled more than 90 potentially contaminated products nationwide — including canned chili, hash and stew — over fears of botulism contamination.

The recall includes two years' production — tens of millions of cans — from the company's plant in Augusta, Ga.

The 52-year-old man from New Mexico's Sandoval County, whose name was not released, was hospitalized July 26 and is in serious condition, able only to wiggle his toes, state health officials said.

"We can communicate with him only by him basically moving his toes," said Deborah Busemeyer, New Mexico Department of Health spokeswoman.

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said a preliminary test showed the man tested positive for botulism, Busemeyer said.

The CDC said earlier that, as of July 22, four people had been hospitalized because of the contaminated food.

In west Texas, one of two siblings who became ill with botulism after eating a can of hot-dog chili sauce remained hospitalized in critical condition Wednesday.

Two other cases also had been confirmed in Indiana.

The siblings, who haven't been identified, are from Abernathy, about 17 miles north of Lubbock, and younger than 18, officials said.

Copyright © 2007 The Seattle Times Company


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