Difference between revisions of "Cryptosporidium"

(Environmental Exposures)
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*Most common cause of chronic diarrhea in HIV patients.
*Most common cause of chronic diarrhea in HIV patients.
==Environmental Exposures==
===Environmental Exposures===
*Swim regularly in pools with insufficient sanitation.
*Swim regularly in pools with insufficient sanitation.
*Hikers who drink untreated water.
*Hikers who drink untreated water.

Revision as of 18:33, 4 June 2015


  • Protozoa causing diarrhea.
    • Oocysts are 4-6 µm in diameter and exhibit partial acid-fast staining.
  • Mostly commonly seen in HIV+
  • Most common cause of chronic diarrhea in HIV patients.

Environmental Exposures

  • Swim regularly in pools with insufficient sanitation.
  • Hikers who drink untreated water.
  • Handling infected cattle.

Clinical Presentation

Symptoms usually appear one week after infection which include:

  • Fever
  • Nausea/vomiting
  • Stomach cramps/pain
  • Watery diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Weight loss

Differential Diagnosis

Acute diarrhea



Watery Diarrhea

Traveler's Diarrhea


  • Stool acid-staining test
  • Stool Culture


  • If non-sick appearing and not immunocompromised, medication often not needed.[2]
  • Antiparasitics such as nitazoxanide for immunocompromised patients.[3]
  • IV/PO hydration if dehydration present.
  • If patient not on HAART therapy, consider contacting HIV/ID for initiating therapies.
  • Admission if severe dehydration or electrolyte imbalance.


  • Most of these patient's can be discharged with close PMD/HIV follow up.
  • If patient has electrolyte abnormalities or severely dehydrated consider observation placement vs admission for rehydration therapy

See Also

External Links


  1. Marx et al. “Cholera and Gastroenteritis caused by Noncholera Vibrio Species”. Rosen’s Emergency Medicine 8th edition vol 1 pg 1245-1246.
  2. White AC Jr. Cryptosporidiosis species. In: Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R, ed. Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier Churchill Livingstone; 209:3547-60.
  3. Lima AAM, Samie A, Guerrant RL. Cryptosporidiosis. In: Guerrant RL, Walker DH, Weller PF, eds. Tropical Infectious Diseases. Philadelphia, Pa: Elsevier-Churchill Livingstone; 2011:640-63.