Dozens of individuals in Texas have been sickened by a parasite known as Cyclospora in current months, well being officers introduced this week.

Thus far, well being officers have recognized 56 sicknesses as a result of Cyclospora since Might, in keeping with an announcement from the Texas Division of State Well being Providers (DSHS). Officers are nonetheless investigating the supply of the sicknesses.

Cyclospora cayetanensis is a microscopic, single-celled parasite that causes an intestinal sickness often called cyclosporiasis in folks, in keeping with the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (CDC). [8 Awful Parasite Infections That Will Make Your Skin Crawl]

Folks turn into contaminated with Cyclospora once they devour meals or water that's contaminated with feces containing the parasite. Nevertheless, the an infection sometimes isn't unfold straight from individual to individual, as a result of as soon as the parasite is handed in stool, it must spend a minimum of one to 2 weeks within the atmosphere (exterior the physique) earlier than it may well infect one other particular person, the CDC says. (The parasite wants time exterior the physique, the place temperatures are decrease, with a purpose to mature.)

Cyclosporiasis is commonest in tropical and subtropical nations, so folks residing in or touring to those areas could also be at elevated threat for an infection, the CDC says. However in america, outbreaks of cyclosporiasis have been linked with imported contemporary produce, together with raspberries, basil, snow peas, mesclun lettuce and cilantro. Lately, Texas has had a number of outbreaks of Cyclospora tied to cilantro.

The principle symptom of cyclosporiasis is watery diarrhea that lasts a number of days to some months, in keeping with the DSHS. Different signs might embrace lack of urge for food, fatigue, weight reduction, belly cramps, bloating, elevated gasoline, nausea, vomiting and a low fever.

Individuals who have signs of cyclosporiasis ought to see their well being care supplier, the DSHS stated within the assertion. The an infection is often handled with a mixture of two antibiotics, in keeping with the CDC.

Final month, the CDC introduced that it was investigating an outbreak of Cyclospora that sickened 185 folks in 4 states: Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan. That outbreak was linked to Del Monte Contemporary Produce vegetable trays containing broccoli, cauliflower, celery sticks, carrots and dill dip. Well being officers haven’t decided whether or not that outbreak and the Texas outbreak have a typical supply.

The DSHS recommends totally washing all contemporary produce, though this will likely not remove the chance of Cyclospora an infection, as a result of the parasite will be tough to scrub off. Cooking meals will kill the parasite, DSHS stated.

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