Cyclosporiasis is a diarrheal illness caused by a parasite called Cyclospora cayetanensis. You can become infected with Cyclospora by drinking water or eating food that is contaminated with the parasite.
Outbreaks in North America have been traced to imported fresh produce such as raspberries and cilantro. Cyclosporiasis is not spread directly from one person to another. When passed in an infected person's stool, the parasite may require days to weeks in the environment before becoming infectious.
Symptoms usually appear one week after exposure. Symptoms include:
Symptoms may subside and then return. If untreated, the illness may last a few days to a month or even longer. Some people who are infected do not develop any symptoms.
Infection can be prevented by avoiding water or food that may be contaminated with stool.
Health care providers can detect cyclosporiasis through stool tests.
Most people who have healthy immune systems will recover without treatment. The recommended medicine for treatment is trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole. This can be prescribed by a health care providers.
Infected people with diarrhea should rest and drink plenty of fluids. Patients should speak to their health care providers before taking medicine to limit their diarrhea.