Cyclospora outbreak spreading through Texas

Cyclospora outbreak spreading through Texas

Posted: Updated:
LUBBOCK, Texas -

A parasite outbreak has sickened dozens of Texans.The Department of State Health Services reports 56 cases of Cyclospora. This is the sixth summer in a row Texas has seen this outbreak. 

"Cyclospora is a parasite that we typically associate with raw vegetables," said Katherine Wells, director of public health for the city of Lubbock. "Individuals eat the vegetable or fruit and they actually ingest that parasite and that is what makes them sick." 

The previous outbreaks are tied to cilantro, packaged salad mixes, raspberries, basil, snow peas, and lettuce. The most common symptoms of this illness are diarrhea, nausea, cramps, bloating, loss of appetite, and fatigue.

"If you have diarrhea for more than three days it's really important to go to the doctor," said Wells. "They can actually test that to see whether or not it is Cyclospora."

Wells said there's been no cases reported in Lubbock county, but if you do catch any of those symptoms, report it. It will help keep other people from getting sick. Cyclospora is treatable with early detection. 

"Cyclospora can be treated by antibiotics," said Wells."It is important for people to go to the doctor if they get tested for it and if they test positive then the doctor can prescribe treatment to shorten the severity of the disease." 

Health experts said the illness is most common during the summertime when fruits and vegetables are brought in to the U.S. from the south. Cyclospora can't be washed away with water only cooking the fruits and vegetables kills the parasite.
 

 

 
 

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