Health department warns of skin infections caused by fish at Chinatown markets

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NEW YORK (PIX11) — The Department of Health is warning New Yorkers of handling live or raw fish at Chinatown fish markets after a recent outbreak of skin infections.

Officials say they have identified an outbreak of a rare skin condition caused by the bacteria Mycobacterium marinum in people who handled fish at markets in Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan Chinatowns.


Officials say the infection could require surgery if left untreated. (Photos: NYC Department of Health)

The infection can cause tender swelling under the skin of the hands and arms, pain and difficultly moving fingers.

Antibiotics are needed to treat  Mycobacterium marinum.

There are no health issues associated with consuming the fish at these markets.

The department urges patrons to use waterproof gloves while handling and preparing fish.

If left untreated, the infection may require surgery over time.

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