One case of parasite confirmed in county, officials remind residents to take precautions


County officials confirmed one person in Jackson County has been ill with a hard-to-kill parasite.

The Jackson County Health Department said a resident was made ill by the parasite that causes cryptosporidiosis, or "crypto."

The disease can be spread by swallowing recreational water in pools, lakes or fountains, interaction with animals, drinking raw milk, eating undercooked food or interaction with other infected people. Crypto has a high tolerance to chlorine, which makes it difficult to kill.

Symptoms include watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, fever and weight loss. They can appear between two or 10 days after someone is infected and last for one to two weeks.

The parasite also spreads through the feces of infected humans or animals.

Lin Montgomery, public health educator, said residents should not panic about the parasite but should take precautions in public water spaces and should wash their hands.

"Our rates are not high, but people should consider taking those steps," she said.

It has been more widespread in Marion County, where 18 cases have been reported. As of Friday, the state had confirmed 88 cases throughout 31 of Indiana’s 92 counties.

Only three other counties throughout the state that have reported five or more cases, including Lake, Allen and Porter counties, according to The Indianapolis Star.

There was one reported death from crypto between 2009 and 2017 across the country, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. During that period, there were 444 outbreaks resulting in 7,465 people becoming ill and 287 people being hospitalized, according to records.

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”At a glance” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

The following recommendations are intended to help prevent and control cryptosporidiosis, or crypto, in members of the general public.

  • Practice good hygiene.
  • Do not swim if you have diarrhea, and wait until two weeks after it has stopped to return to swimming.
  • Do not swallow water from pools, lakes, fountains or other public water spaces.
  • Avoid water that may be contaminated.


No posts to display