Cryptosporidium What we as a society do collectively to assure the conditions in which people can live productive and vigorous lives. Public Health does things that benefit everyone. It also prevents illness and educates the population. Public Health is a combination of science, practical skills and beliefs that is directed to the maintenance and improvement of the health of people. The science and art of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting physical health and efficiency through organized community efforts. Cryptosporidium Parvum has been recognized as a human pathogen since 1976. During 1976-1982, the disease was reported rarely and occurred predominantly in immunocompromised persons.

In 1982, the number of reported cases began to increases as a result of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS). Cryptosporidium Parvum is a one-cell parasite, which cause the disease Cryptosporidiosis. Cryptosporidiosis is an intestinal illness caused by a microscopic parasite called cryptosporidium. The parasite is transmitted by ingestion of oocysts excreted in the feces of infected humans or animals. The infection can therefore be transmitted from person-to-person, through ingestion of contaminated water or food, from animal to person, or by contact with fecally contaminated environmental surfaces.

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Cryptosporidium can be found on clothing, bedding, or other things used by infected persons, such person with diarrhea or children in diapers. Sex that may involve contact with stool, especially oral sex, can also pass cryptosporidia. The stool of domestic and farm animals, especially animals less than six months old or animals with diarrhea, can contain cryptosporidium. Individuals should always wash their hands after touching animals or cleaning up their stool or visiting barns and areas where these animals live. Also in women, when cleaning yourself after movement of bowels, wipe front to back to avoid fecal contact with the vagina and urethra.

The most common symptom is diarrhea, which is usually watery which is often accompanied by abdominal cramping, nausea, vomiting, fever, headache and loss or appetite may also occur. Some people with cryptosporidium may be asymptomatic. The incubation period may range from one to twelve days with an average of seven days. Sources of crypto are; people, cows, cats, mice, turkeys, chickens, monkeys, sheep, goats, rabbits, fish, reptiles, opossums, and birds. As of November 16,1999 cryptosporidium parvum effected thirty six people within the state of New Jersey; 2 in Atlantic county, 4 in Bergen county, 5 in Burlington county, 5 in Camden county, 2 in Cape may, 2 in Essex county, 1 in Hudson county, 1 in Hunterton county, 4 in Middlesex county, 4 in Monmouth county, 2 in Morris county, 2 in Ocean county, 2 in Passaic county, 2 in Union county, and 1 in Sussex county. The most common transmission for these effected persons in NJ is person to person contact, fecal to oral contact, and homosexual males.

No one has every died from this illness In NJ but some of theses people have been hospitalized for observation and to be exact it is not something else. Day care centers have to be exceptionally careful because of younger children who wear diapers. Changing a baby who may be infected can make the handler at risk if the fecal matter was meet. In 1994 there was a reported 2, 070 estimated cases in Lake Nummy, NJ suspected cause was from contaiminated shallow Lake park. Today there is no vaccination or medicine for this illness.

If infected, contact your medical practitioner for immediate diagnosis. There are precautions that we as a community can do. As a community we can: ? Use a water filter; unless it is distilled or pasteurized, bottled water may not be any safer than tap water. Using a water filter that has the words “reverse osmosis” on the label protect against crypto. Some “absolute 1 micron” and most “nominal 1 micron” filters will not work against crypto. ? Boiling water for at least one minute with a rolling boil will kill cryptosporidium. ? Properly drilled and maintained wells that utilize underground water are generally protected from surface contaminattion and are unlikely to contain cryptosporidium oocysts.

? Practice safer sex. (Rimming) kissing or licking the anus. ? Be careful when swimming in lakes, rivers, or pools, and when using hot tubs. ? Avoid touching farm animals and stool of pets. ? Wash hands thoroughly before and after handling food. ? Food that would be eaten uncooked should be washed well, peel skin off, and then eaten. ? Do not eat or drink unpasteurized milk or dairy products.

There have been numerous outbreaks of crypto but the one that effected the most people was in Milwaukee. In 1993 cryptosporidiosis affected more than 400,000 people. I believe that cryptosporidium parvum is in the scope of public health because it efffect the community as a whole. In order not receive this sickly illness the community has to come together and take precautions not only in the house but also in schools, play grounds, work place, and after school programs. In a community we look out for each other so it would be helpful to contact the FDA, and Safe Water Drinking department in their community.

The most important question that pops in my mind is how to elevate more outbreaks in NJ? First the government could examine the illness more to find out exactly where the parasite is developed and maybe from that point it can be eradicated. If that does not work we as a society can only take precautions as I mentioned above, use water filters, do not touch stool of any kind, and boil water for at least one minute with a rolling boil. Because it is a water born illness and a very intricate malady, I can not pin point a main proposal to maybe eradicate this sickness. From learning about the disease and talking to people who are studying it, I gathered that the only possible step to avoid this affliction is by using precautionary measures (such as those mentioned above). Bibliography 1. New Jersey State Health Department 1-800-367-6543 Mrs.

Mary Jane Hung and Dr. Sorsage 2. Safe Drinking Water Act 1-609-292-5550 Steve Pudney 3. “Cryptosporidiosis: Fact Sheet”. Center For Disease Control and Prevention. 28 May.1998. Available: htm 4.

“Cryptosporidiosis: Control and Prevention”. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 28 May.1998. Available: tm 5. Juronek, D.

Dennis. “Cryptosporidiosis: Sources of Infection and Guidelines for Prevention”. 28 May. 1998. Available: tm 6.

“Cryptosporidiosis”. Cryptosporidiosis. 9 May.1998. Avaiable: 7. “Cryptosporidiosis”. New York State Department of Health Communicable Disease Fact Sheet.

February 1999. Available: to.htm 8. “Waterborne/foodborne outbreaks of Cryptosporidium parvum”. Cryptosporidium in the Environment. 4 September.1999.

Available: 9. “Jersey City Water Consumer Confidence Report”. City of Jersey City. 15 January.1999. Available: 10. “Foodborne Outbreak of Diarrheal Illness Associated with Cryptosporidium parvunMinnesota, 1995”.

Morbidity and Morality Weekly Report. 13 September. 1996. Available; http://www- 11. “Assessing the Public Health Threat Associated with Waterborne Cryptosporidiosis: Report of a Workshop”.

Assessing Public Health Threat Assc. w/Waterborne Cryptosporidiosis. 16 June.1995. Available: 7331/entire.htm.


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