Cyclosporiasis, a rare illness traced to contaminated produce and salad products, can be tricky to diagnose due to the fact that many of its characteristic symptoms are similar to those of other medical conditions. A diagnosis of cyclosporiasis must be confirmed by the taking of a stool for the presence of Cyclospora cayetanensis, the pathogen that causes the illness. Over the past several years, flow cytometry has been increasingly used as a method of identifying Cyclospora bacteria in environmental and clinical samples.
Cyclosporiasis Food Poisoning Update 8/27/13: Not all of the more than 600 cases involved in the recent Cyclospora food poisoning outbreak are related to each other, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported this week. “The preliminary analysis of results from this ongoing cluster investigation in Texas does not show a connection to salad mix, leafy greens, and salad mix components produced at Taylor Farms de Mexico,” the CDC said. Click here to learn more.
Free Cyclosporiasis Outbreak Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Cyclosporiasis, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a suit against the manufacturer of the contaminated food and we can help.
How is Cyclosporiasis Diagnosed?
Cyclosporiasis has been known to cause prolonged bouts of diarrheal illness, particularly in individuals who have recently traveled to subtropical regions. Testing for Cyclospora cayetanensis is not typically done in the majority of laboratories in the United States, even when stool is tested for parasitic organisms. Therefore, if indicated, doctors should specifically test for the presence of the bacteria.
Cyclosporiasis infections must be diagnosed by examining stool specimens. This process can be difficult because even patients who are exhibiting symptoms of the illness might not shed enough oocysts in their stool to be detectable. Therefore, individuals who suspect they may have Cyclosporiasis may be required to provide a number of specimens on different occasions.
Additionally, the diagnostic process should involve sensitive recovery and detection methods that are designed to identify Cyclospora oocysts. These oocysts can be found by implementing modified acid-fast or modified (“hot”) safranin techniques. Cyclospora cayetanensis oocysts are auto-fluorescent, which means that when stool containing the bacteria is viewed under an ultraviolet fluorescence microscope, the oocysts look blue or green against a black background. Molecular diagnosis techniques, such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis, can also be used to look for Cyclospora bacteria in the stool.
Additional Information about the diagnosis of Cyclosporiasis
- Cyclospora cayetanensis oocysts are notoriously hard to identify due to the fact that low-level shedding is common. To maximize recovery of oocysts, healthcare providers should concentrate the stool specimen and then examine a wet mount and/or a stained slide of the sediment.
- Cyclospora oocysts are typically between ~8-10 micrometers in diameter. By comparison, Cryptosporidium parvum/hominis oocysts are ~4-6 micrometers in diameter.
- Ultraviolet fluorescence microscopy is an effective method of examining stool samples for Cyclospora cayetanensis oocysts, which stand out because they auto-fluoresce. If Cyclospora oocysts are identified, various methods of contrast microscopy can be implemented to confirm their characteristic morphologic features.
Need More Info?
Click on the links below for additional information on the diagnosis of Cyclosporiasis:
- Mayo Clinic – Cyclospora Infection: Tests and Diagnosis
- New York State Department of Health – Cyclospora Infection (Cyclosporiasis)
- U.S. National Library of Medicine – Detection of Cyclospora cayetanensis Oocysts in Human Fecal Specimens by Flow Cytometry
Do I Have a Cyclosporiasis Outbreak Lawsuit?
The Food Poisoning Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in Cyclosporiasis outbreak lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new Cyclosporiasis food poisoning cases in all 50 states.
Free Cyclosporiasis Outbreak Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with Cyclosporiasis, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a If you or a loved one was injured by food poisoning caused by a Cyclosporiasis outbreak suit and we can help.