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IN SOME cultures, eating gallbladders from certain species of snakes, birds, or fish is believed to improve health. A syndrome of acute hepatitis and renal failure following the ingestion of raw carp gallbladders has been described previously among persons living in Asia.1-4 This report summarizes two cases of this syndrome that occurred in residents of Pennsylvania who had eaten the raw bile and gallbladders of carp caught in Maryland.
On July 11,1991, a 59-year-old man who had immigrated from Korea ate the uncooked gallbladder of a carp he had caught in Maryland from a tributary of the Susquehanna River. Six hours after eating the gallbladder, he developed diarrhea and abdominal pain. On July 14, he was admitted to a hospital with mild jaundice and persistent nausea and vomiting. Laboratory testing revealed elevated levels of serum creatinine (10 mg/dL [normal: 0.7-1.5 mg/dL]), total bilirubin (3.5 mg/dL
Acute Hepatitis and Renal Failure Following Ingestion of Raw Carp Gallbladders-Maryland and Pennsylvania, 1991 and 1994. JAMA. 1995;274(8):604. doi:10.1001/jama.1995.03530080020017