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05/17/24 Public Health Education Topic: Cyclosporiasis


Cyclospora cayetanensis is a parasite composed of one cell, too small to be seen without a microscope. This parasite causes an intestinal infection called cyclosporiasis.

How is Cyclospora spread?

Cyclospora is spread by people ingesting something—such as food or water—that was contaminated with feces (stool). Cyclospora needs time (typically, at least 1–2 weeks) after being passed in a bowel movement to become infectious for another person. Therefore, it is unlikely that Cyclospora is passed directly from one person to another.

Where is cyclosporiasis found?

It is found in many countries. But it’s most common in tropical and subtropical regions. In the United States, foodborne outbreaks of cyclosporiasis have been linked to various types of imported fresh produce, including raspberries, basil, snow peas, and mesclun lettuce; no commercially frozen or canned produce has been implicated.

Who can get cyclosporiasis?

Anyone. In the United States, foodborne outbreaks of cyclosporiasis have been linked to imported fresh produce. U.S. cases of infection also have occurred in people who traveled to parts of the world where the parasite is found.

What are the symptoms of cyclosporiasis, and when do they begin and end?

They usually begin about 1 week after exposure. If the infection is not treated, symptoms can last for several weeks to a month or more. Symptoms may include the following:

• Frequent bouts of watery diarrhea (the most common symptom)

• Loss of appetite and weight

• Cramping, bloating, and/or increased gas

• Nausea (vomiting is less common)

• Fatigue

• Low-grade fever

To learn more, visit the CDC website: CDC - Cyclosporiasis

View the full factsheet: Cyclosporiasis. (



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