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Nationwide outbreak of parasite causes prolonged "food poisoning" like symptoms

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Cyclospora parasite (PHOTO CREDIT: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Cyclospora parasite (PHOTO CREDIT: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - An unusual multi-state outbreak of a microscopic parasite is causing prolonged “food poisoning” like symptoms for a handful of Wisconsin residents, including one in Brown County.  The cyclospora parasite has effected around 200 people nationwide, a majority in Iowa, and health officials have still to determine its point of origin.  “In the past it’s been associated with contaminated produce or contaminated water ingestion,”  said State Public Health Veterinarian Dr. Jim Kazmierczak. The illness is treatable, but it could last for months if it’s not treated. 

The parasite incubation period is normally a week. 

Kazmierczak says everyone should take an extra precaution and thoroughly wash any produce. 

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