Toronto health officials are advising customers of the Big Carrot Organic Juice Bar located at 348 Danforth Ave. in Toronto, Ontario, of a possible exposure risk to hepatitis A after an employee tested positive for the virus.

Toronto skyline/Geo Swan
Toronto skyline/Geo Swan

Patrons that who consumed fresh organic juice between March 17 and April 2, 2015 could be at risk of infection.

Toronto Public Health has already held two hepatitis A vaccination clinics Monday and Tuesday.

Health officials say the hepatitis A vaccine is most effective when received within 14 days of exposure. While the risk is low, individuals who consumed fresh organic juice from this food market during these dates should get a hepatitis A vaccination as soon as possible as they may have been exposed to hepatitis A.

Hepatitis A is a virus that can cause a liver infection. Symptoms can last a few days to several months. The virus is rarely fatal and most people develop lifetime immunity following infection. Hepatitis A can be serious however, especially for older people and those with chronic liver disease. For these individuals, there is a greater risk of hospitalization and death. Most people who are infected recover completely. Unlike hepatitis B and C, hepatitis A does not develop into chronic hepatitis or cirrhosis (scarring of the liver) and death from hepatitis A infection is rare.

Symptoms can begin 15 to 50 days after becoming infected. It is also possible to be infected and not have any symptoms. For symptomatic individuals, the severity of symptoms can range from mild to severe.

Common symptoms of hepatitis A include: Fever, tiredness, loss of appetite, nausea/vomiting, dark urine, stomach pains and jaundice (yellowing of the skin).

This virus is transmitted from person-to-person by the fecal-oral route. It is found in the stool of a person infected with the virus. It is not spread by coughing or sneezing. A common route of exposure is food contaminated by infected food handlers.