An illness responsible for more than 40 hospitalizations has been discovered in the lake area.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services was notified by a health provider in Miller County of a case of Cyclospora. Previously, the department announced that health providers in Jackson County, Taney County and the Kansas City metro area reported cases of Cyclospora. This brings the total to four confirmed cases of Cyclospora in Missouri.
The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is currently working with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and other agencies to investigate whether or not these cases are linked to cases in other states. At this point, the source of the illnesses has not been confirmed.
On June 28, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was notified of two lab-confirmed cases of Cyclospora infection in Iowa residents who had become ill in June and did not have a history of international travel during the 14 days prior to the onset of the illness.
An intestinal illness caused by a microscopic parasite, Cyclosporiasis People is spread by consuming food or water contaminated with the parasite.
Since that date, cases continue to be reported. The CDC is working with public health officials in multiple states and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to investigate the outbreak.
Investigations by public health officials in Nebraska and Iowa indicated that the Cyclospora infections in their states are linked to a salad mix. CDC's independent analyses of data from those epidemiologic investigations confirmed the association between consuming salad and being ill with cyclosporiasis during June and July 2013 in those two states. The salad was determined to be a pre-packaged salad mix.
On Aug. 2, the CDC received results of a traceback investigation from the FDA. This investigation identified Taylor Farms de Mexico, S. de R.L. de C.V., a processor of foodservice salads, as the source of the pre-packaged salad mix identified in the cyclosporiasis outbreak in Iowa and Nebraska.
It is not yet clear whether the cases from all of the states are part of the same outbreak. The CDC is continuing to work with federal, state and local partners in the investigation to determine whether this conclusion applies to the cases of cyclosporiasis in other states.
The CDC has dedicated a team of epidemiologists, laboratory scientists, statisticians and communicators to work on the outbreak full time with additional staff assisting.
Q&A on Cyclospora
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.
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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 (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.
Who is at risk for Cyclospora infection?
People living or traveling in tropical or subtropical regions of the world may be at increased risk for infection because cyclosporiasis is endemic (found) in some countries in these zones. In the U.S., foodborne outbreaks of cyclosporiasis have been linked to various types of imported fresh produce.
What are the symptoms of Cyclospora infection?
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.
How long can the symptoms last?
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 should I do if I think I might be infected with Cyclospora?
See your health care provider.
How is Cyclospora infection treated?
The recommended treatment is a combination of two antibiotics, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, also known as Bactrim*, Septra*, or Cotrim*. People who have diarrhea should also rest and drink plenty of fluids.