Cryptosporidiosis (crypto) is a diarrheal disease caused by very small cryptosporidium parasites. The parasite commonly is found in drinking water and recreational water in every region of the United States and throughout the world. Cryptosporidium lives in the intestine of infected humans and animals and can also be found in soil, food, water, or surfaces that have been contaminated. A person can become infected when he/she swallows the parasite. A common symptom is watery diarrhea. Other symptoms include: dehydration, weight loss, stomach cramps or pains, fever, nausea, and vomiting. Some people with crypto may not have any symptoms at all. Symptoms usually occur two days after exposure to cryptosporidium.
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