With the current surge of COVID, you would think that is all you have to worry about, disease-wise.

You would be greatly mistaken.

There is a vicious intestinal parasite that is causing problems for many people throughout the country, including in Michigan.

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What Is This Vicious Intestinal Parasite?

When I was this word, I stared at it for a while to figure out how to pronounce it correctly.


A coccidian protozoan parasite causes cyclosporiasis, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).


Typically, you ingest the parasite from contaminated food or water. The average incubation period lasts a week but can range from 2 days to more than 2 weeks.

The CDC says that,

"The most common symptom is watery diarrhea, which can be profuse. Other symptoms can include abdominal cramps, anorexia, bloating, body aches, low-grade fever, nausea, vomiting, and weight loss. If untreated, the illness can last for several weeks or months with a remitting–relapsing course."

It is most common in tropical and subtropical regions.

"People typically become infected through the consumption of contaminated fresh produce or contaminated water. All travelers are at risk of infection, regardless of the purpose or length of their travel in an endemic area; even short-term travelers can become infected. Outbreaks in the United States and Canada typically occur during the spring and summer months; historically these have been linked to consumption of imported fresh produce."

Has This Vicious Intestinal Parasite Affected Michigan?

Simple answer. Yes.

You can look at this case map and see how many cases Michigan currently has.


In 2023, The CDC shared that,

"As of October 24, 2023, 41 jurisdictions, including 40 states and New York City, have reported a total of 2,272 laboratory-confirmed cases of cyclosporiasis."

The CDC closed the cases for this parasite in 2023, however, they recently opened a "yellow book" for 2024.

While there have been hospitalizations, no deaths have been reported.

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Gallery Credit: Laura Hardy

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