Here is a copy of an article from the Orlando Sentinel. What a sad story. Have any of you stopped eating beef? I know that it's supposed to be safe to eat it again in the UK. Most of my English relatives don't eat it, but I'm sure my husband and my father will have some when we visit this year. _______________________________________________________________________ A 22-year-old British woman living in Florida apparently is the first U.S. case of the human form of mad-cow disease, health officials said Thursday. They would not reveal where the woman lives or provide any information about her condition, citing a desire to guard her privacy. The woman unquestionably caught the fatal disease while living in the United Kingdom years ago, they said. "We have no evidence or reason to believe that she got this in the United States," said Dr. John Agwunobi, Florida's secretary of health. State health officials were alerted to the case Wednesday by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which had been working with British authorities to confirm the illness. In humans, the condition is called new variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease, a debilitating neurological disease that is thought to be caught by eating beef from cattle infected with mad-cow disease. It is not contagious. There has never been a case of mad-cow disease in U.S. animals, but cattle in Great Britain suffered an outbreak of the illness from the late 1980s through 1996. There have been 125 cases of its human counterpart to date -- with 117 from the United Kingdom, six from France and one each from Ireland and Italy, according to the CDC. Officials say the Florida patient was living overseas during the height of the problem. An investigation into her case will continue, but Agwunobi said there is little more that can be done at this point to confirm the illness. A final confirmation is not possible until after death through an autopsy. People with the disease often can be infected up to 10 years before showing symptoms, which start with mild changes in their mental states. Agwunobi said early signs may appear as depression or anxiety, then advance to sensory and neurological problems. Patients lose vision and develop an unsteady gait or the inability to stand. "They increasingly become bedridden and debilitated, eventually resulting in death," Agwunobi said. "There is no treatment at this time."