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CDC Issues Parasite Warning For Recreational Waters

Recreational Water Parasite

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a warning on Friday in which the agency warned of outbreaks of illness associated with recreational water use, such as public pools, hot tubs and the like.

The warning comes as a result of a tough little parasite known as Cryptosporidium, which can lead to gastrointestinal issues including diarrhea.

With its tough outer-shell, the parasite can “survive for 10 days” in treated waters, according to the CDC’s chief of the Health Swimming Program, Michele Hlavasa, who also told ABC News that such outbreaks can “disproportionately affect young children” because they’re the ones who can go to pool and they’re the ones that “tend to carry lots of germs.”

It can survive for 10 days (…) With these outbreaks, we see they disproportionately affect young children (…) They’re the ones who can go to a pool and young children tend to carry lots of germs.

This survival rate in treated waters is particularly troubling as other bacteria, such as E. coli, are killed within minutes to hours of treatment.

In those with a weakened immune system, the parasite can prove fatal, however, it can fortunately be cleared from the body in roughly two to three weeks.

According to the CDC, half of all treated recreational water-associated outbreaks reported between 2011 and 2012 came as a result of Cryptosporidium.

For those who treat their pools and hot tubs with chlorine, it’s worth noting that the “parasite is extremely chlorine-resistant,” Hlavsa told CBS News.

This parasite is extremely chlorine-resistant (…) Swimmers bring it into the water when they are sick with diarrhea.

In other news, the cat poop parasite Toxoplasma gondii could have the ability to make humans go crazy, as a recent study published in the journal Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica has found that infection makes humans nearly twice as likely to develop schizophrenia.

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