Woman says teen son’s illness could be result of Blue Bell ice cream

A Gwinnett County woman suspects a batch of tainted ice cream is responsible for her son's week-long illness.

Blue Bell Creameries is now recalling its entire ice cream line, as it looks for the cause of a mysterious food poisoning outbreak.

"I didn't feel good. I was in class and I was falling asleep because it hurt," said Jerry Paschal.

The 17-year-old said symptoms of gastric distress hit the morning after he consumed a shake made with Blue Bell vanilla.

"He was vomiting, had diarrhea.  He was complaining of a really bad headache," recalled his mother, Neek Washington, of the illness last month.

The company is trying to trace an outbreak of the pathogen listeria.  Several school systems in metro Atlanta reported pulling the product Tuesday.

Infectious disease specialist Dr. Robin Dretler said an otherwise healthy 17-year-old does not fit the mold of the usual listeria victim.

"A perfectly healthy person is going to get diarrhea for a day or two," he said.

Washington plans to report her suspicions to Georgia health authorities.  Dretler said he has his own suspicions about what could have triggered the problem.

"Usually an infected cow.  It's one of the things we pasteurize milk to prevent," he said.