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MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – The number of Cryptosporidium Crypto cases are on the rise in Middle Georgia.
According to the North Central Health District, the number of cases jumped from 4 to 60 between July 31st and August 31st.
People infected with the parasite may feel gastrointestinal discomfort between two and 10 days after initial contact. It can be found in water, food, soil, surfaces, or hands that have been in contact with human or animal feces. The symptoms can last from one to two weeks. Officials say the illness can be spread up to 2 weeks after symptoms disappear. The NCHD says the parasite is the leading cause of waterborne illness in the U.S.
The most common transmission of Crypto is swallowing water containing the parasite. It can come from untreated water sources, like swimming pools, fountains, and rivers. NCHD says anyone infected with Crypto should wait up to 2 weeks after symptoms disappear before entering a pool, or waterpark.
You can protect yourself by washing your hands and avoid swallowing contaminated water. NCHD says hand sanitizers are not effective in preventing Crypto.
Click this link to report cases of Crypto.