Two people in the last month have been sickened from a toxin found in an herbal tea they each purchased from the same Chinatown herbalist. As KRON 4 reports via the Health Department, the two remain critically ill and in the hospital.
Per a statement from the Health Department:
“In separate incidents in February and March, a woman in her 50s and a man in his 30s became critically ill within an hour of drinking tea made from leaves supplied by the same San Francisco herbalist. Each quickly developed weakness, and then life-threatening abnormal heart rhythms, requiring resuscitation and intensive hospital care. A plant-based toxin, Aconite, was found in lab tests of the patients and the tea samples they provided."
According to the Chronicle, the culprit tea leaves were sold by the Sun Wing Wo Trading Co., an herbalist at 1105 Grant Ave. As shown in the image above, the awning advertises the place as a ginseng specialist.
Also, city health officer Dr. Tomás Aragón says, via the Chronicle, “Anyone who has purchased tea from this location should not consume it and should throw it away immediately.”
The health department is working with the shop owner to remove the toxic products.