A woman who was sickened and left in critical condition after consuming herbal tea from a San Francisco medicinal shop in San Francisco's Chinatown has died, health authorities announced Monday.
The woman, whose identity was not released, became sick within an hour after sipping tea in February, according to Rachael Kagan, a spokeswoman for the San Francisco Department of Public Health. The second victim is said to be a man in his 30s who remains hospitalized after developing weakness and a life-threatening abnormal heart rhythm. He became critically ill and was hospitalized. She died on March 18 at a local hospital, authorities said. The tea blends contained different ingredients that are now being tested.
Anyone who purchased the ingredient should stop consuming it, health officials said.
Common ingredients in the teas are now being tested.
Aconite is a wild plant and extremely toxic, according to the Journal of Clinical Toxicology.
Aconite, also known as monkshood, helmet flower and wolfsbane, is used in Asian herbal medicines.
The toxin attacks the heart and can be lethal, Dr. Tomás Aragón, health officer for the city and county of San Francisco, said in a written statement.
There is no antidote for aconite poisoning.
The two patients each purchased different blends of medicinal teas that were put together for them at the shop. "The proprietor is fully cooperating with the Health Department to trace the source of the toxin and ensure safety for future customers".
Sadly, the story from ten days ago about the two people who were recently sickened after drinking tea purchased from a Chinatown herbalist has taken a tragic turn.