Lavinia had stopped at a gas station April 21 and chose to drizzle the Doritos she bought with the gas station's nacho cheese sauce.
Lavinia Kelly is one of five confirmed cases of botulism suspected to have been contracted from the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station in Sacramento, according to a statement from the county.
Due to the multiple botulism cases linked to Valley Oak Food and Fuel, Sacramento health officials suspended the gas station's ability to serve food.
Officials believe the culprit is the nacho cheese, but the investigation is ongoing.
Sacramento County woman who purchased nacho cheese from a gas station dispenser has been sent to the Sutter Medical Center for nearly a month after being diagnosed with botulism, a serious illness that can result in paralysis, moreover, she had breath difficulty.
A Sacramento woman Lavinia Kelly is clinging to life after suffering botulism poisoning from eating some Doritos drizzled with nacho cheese from this gas station.
Kelly has spent three weeks in intensive care fighting to breathe and even open her eyes.
Torres told the Sacramento Bee that her illness has become so bad that her family has to hold her eyelids open just so she can see who is in the room.
According to Ricky Torres, Lavinia's boyfriend, Lavinia was on her way home from work on April 21, when she stopped at the Valley Oak Food and Fuel gas station to grab a quick bite to eat. She went to Sutter Medical Center, where she is now staying, but was sent home.
According to the county update, food safety officials revoked the gas station's permit to sell food and drink on May 5.
Kelly's sister Theresa wipes away a tear as she speaks about the tragic incident.
Nine people are being treated at area hospitals. Employees of the gas station refused to comment on the food poisoning problems.
In 2015, 39 of 199 confirmed total cases of botulism were food-borne, according to the Centers for Disease Control's most recent National Botulism Surveillance Summary [PDF]. We will use the lawsuit to learn more about the source of the food product that was contaminated.
"Thank God that we know she can recover", Theresa said.
Foodborne botulism thrives and produces the toxin in environments with little oxygen, such as in canned food. "That's an essential question".
Her sister Theresa Kelly tells Fox 40 that Lavinia called her that day and could not articulate the words well, but that she understood her sister was trying to say, "I need you here now". They've also set up a GoFundMe page for help with the medical bills.
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