FDA Investigates Multistate Outbreak of CyclosporiasisPosted July 22, 2013
On this page:
- What is Cyclospora?
- Who is at Risk?
- What are the Symptoms?
- What do Consumers Need to Do?
- Who should be Contacted?
|The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Cyclospora infections. We are moving quickly to learn as much as possible and prevent additional people from becoming ill. We recognize that people will be concerned about this outbreak, and we will continue to provide updates and advice. |
What is the Problem and What is Being Done About It?
The FDA, CDC, and state and local officials are investigating a multi-state outbreak of Cyclospora illnesses possibly linked to undetermined food products.
What is Cyclospora?
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.
Cyclospora is spread by people ingesting something - such as food or water - that was contaminated with the parasite. Cyclospora needs time (days to 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.
For more information on Cyclospora: http://www.cdc.gov/parasites/cyclosporiasis/
Who is at Risk?
People can become infected with Cyclospora by consuming food or water contaminated with the parasite. People living or travelling in countries where cyclosporiasis is endemic, including certain tropical or subtropical regions of the world may be at increased risk for infection.
What are the Symptoms?
The time between becoming infected and becoming sick is usually about 1 week. Cyclospora infects the small intestine (bowel) and usually causes watery diarrhea, with frequent, sometimes explosive, bowel movements. Other common symptoms include loss of appetite, weight loss, stomach cramps/pain, bloating, increased gas, nausea, and fatigue. Vomiting, body aches, headache, fever, and other flu-like symptoms may be noted. Some people who are infected with Cyclospora do not have any symptoms. If not treated, the illness may last from a few days to a month or longer. Symptoms may seem to go away and then return one or more times (relapse). It’s common to feel very tired.
What do Consumers Need to Do?
If more specific information becomes available, FDA and CDC will share it with the public, along with any steps consumers can take to prevent illnesses.
Consumers should always practice safe food handling and preparation measures. Wash hands, utensils, and surfaces with hot, soapy water before and after handling food. Fresh produce should be thoroughly washed before it is eaten.
Who should be Contacted?
Contact your healthcare provider if you have diarrhea that lasts for more than 3 days.
The FDA encourages consumers with questions about food safety to call 1-888-SAFEFOOD or consult the fda.gov website: www.fda.gov .
The information in this release reflects the FDA’s best efforts to communicate what it has learned from the manufacturer and the state and local public health agencies involved in the investigation. The agency will update this page as more information becomes available.
For more information: