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Cyclospora and cyclosporiasis 

Cyclospora and cyclosporiasis

Chapter:
Cyclospora and cyclosporiasis
Author(s):

R. Lainson

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199204854.003.070806_update_001

Update:

Epidemiology—possibility of airborne and zoonotic transmission.

Updated on 31 May 2012. The previous version of this content can be found here.
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date: 28 March 2017

Most species of Cyclospora (Protozoa: Apicomplexa: Eimeriidae) are parasites of various reptiles and mammals. C. cayetanensis, which probably infects only humans, is transmitted by way of resistant oocysts voided in the faeces and contaminating food or water. Distribution is worldwide, particularly in regions with a low level of hygiene. Clinical presentation is with explosive outbreaks of acute diarrhoea, with this infection now regarded as an important causative agent of traveller’s diarrhoea. Diagnosis is dependent on detection of oocysts in faeces by direct examination or in stained faecal smears. Aside from supportive care, treatment with trimethoprim–sulfamethoxazole has proved effective in eliminating the parasite in immunocompetent patients, but relapses are common in those with AIDS. Prevention is by ensuring good general hygiene, and in areas of high endemicity water should be boiled before drinking or use in preparation of fruits/vegetables that are to be eaten raw.

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