San Francisco woman dies after drinking toxic tea

San Francisco woman dies after drinking toxic tea

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.

The other victim, a man in his 30s who was hospitalized earlier this month, recovered and was released from the hospital on March 12, according to Department of Public Health spokeswoman Rachael Kagan.

Yu-Ping Xie, a 56-year-old San Francisco resident, died Saturday at a hospital where she had been since February after drinking tea made with leaves bought at Sun Wing Wo Trading Company at 1105 Grant Ave.

A San Francisco man in his 30s had identical symptoms after drinking tea from the same herbalist in March.

The two patients each purchased different blends of medicinal teas that were put together for them at the shop. The tea blends contained different ingredients that are now being tested.

"The tea leaves were provided in a plastic bag", which was not labeled, according to Aragon.

Investigators say the poisonous ingredient is called aconite, which is derived from the helmet flower or plant commonly called "Monkshood". It must be processed properly to be safe.

If not prepared property, Aconite can affect the heart and trigger neurological symptoms.

Those affected may also experience nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain and diarrhea.

Officials said store employees are working with the city's health department to trace the source of the toxic ingredient.

If you've purchased tea from the Sun Wing Wo Trading Company, health officials are asking that you dispose of the products immediately. As Drugs.com explains, Aconite has been used both as a homeopathic medicine and a poison for centuries, with its medicinal use as an extract for reducing fever, treating pneumonia and croup, and for its sedative powers.