poisoning markham restaurant

Suspected mass poisoning event at Markham restaurant leaves multiple patrons very ill

York Region Public Health has confirmed that they are investigating reports of multiple extremely sick customers who visited a restaurant in Markham.

"The Regional Municipality of York is currently investigating reports of several individuals becoming seriously ill following a meal at a restaurant in the City of Markham,"  said Dr. Barry Pakes, the regional medical officer of health, in a statement to blogTO.

Customers who ate any food from Delight Restaurant & BBQ located at 1250 Castlemore Avenue, Unit 4 in Markham on Saturday, Aug. 27 or Sunday, Aug. 28 and are feeling unwell are advised to see immediate medical attention.

Pakes could not confirm how many people have become sick or the potential cause of the severe illness.

"York Region Public Health responded immediately by launching an investigation and closing the restaurant," said Pakes.

This statement from the region comes after the head of the Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology Division at Sunnybrook Health Sciences took to Twitter to share that he had been hearing reports of a mass-poisoning event.

"Hearing reports of a mass poisoning event related to a Markham restaurant, possibly involving aconite. Aconitine is highly toxic alkaloid derived from the genus Aconitum (monkshood, wolfsbane and others)," read a tweet from David Juurlink.

He goes on to explain the effects from aconite may include vomitting, nausea and cramping, numbness, muscle weakness, hypotension and sometimes even comas.

A quick search on Google states that aconitine is a dangerous toxin, it can be found in raw aconite plants and that it's also used as a medicine.

Dr. Michael Warner of Michael Garron Hospital in Toronto also added to Juurlink’s Twitter thread by saying "a notice has been circulating through the GTA ICU community about this poisoning event which has apparently affected multiple patients sent to different hospitals (not mine)."

York Region's and Pakes' statement did not any comments on possible aconitine exposure or poisoning or what exactly caused patrons to become sick.

When asked directly if they were considering aconitine poisoning, a media spokesperson said they were unable to confirm. 

Pakes statement confirmed that restuarant owners are fully cooperating with the public health investigation.

Customers who may have ordered takeout from Delight Restaurant or who have left over food should dispose of it immediately.

Individuals can also contact Health Connection at 1-800-361-5653 Monday to Friday 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. to report their symptoms.

Lead photo by

Tiffany W

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