July 17, 2024

Think You Have Cyclospora? Here’s What to Ask Your Doctor About Testing

A multistate cyclospora outbreak has sickened at least 206 people across the Midwest. The outbreak is potentially linked to bagged salads containing iceberg lettuce, red cabbage, and carrots that was produced by Fresh Express and allegedly sold at Hy Vee, Giant Eagle, ShopRite, ALDI, Walmart, and Jewel Osco stores in many states. So do you think you have cyclospora? Here’s what to ask your doctor about testing.

Think You Have Cyclospora? Here's What to Ask Your Doctor About Testing

First, the stool test for cyclospora has to be specially requested. It’s not a common test that is routinely conducted. Anecdotal evidence we have heard is that many people are told by their doctors that their is no need for a test, or that there is no test for this parasite. Both of these statements are false. For the best outcome, a test definitively finding cyclospora oocysts in a stool sample is necessary for the correct treatment.

A standard foodborne illness stool does does not test for cyclospora. Some doctors may not know that the cyclospora test is a separate test and needs to be specifically ordered.

Attorney Fred Pritzker

You can contact food safety attorney Fred Pritzker for help if you have been diagnosed with cyclosporiasis by calling 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.

Noted food safety attorney Fred Pritzker said, “It is crucial that presumptive cyclospora patients ask for a test to see if they are infected with this parasite. That is the only way to get a definite diagnosis and proper treatment. This illness can last for months and recur without warning unless it is properly treated.”

If you do test positive, it’s important that you report that finding to your local health department. As of 2015, cyclospora is a reportable illness in 43 states, NYC, and the District of Columbia.

Nothing will happen to you; they just need to know the number of people affected by this outbreak and may ask you to answer a survey to help trace the contaminated food back to its source. Not only does this help with traceback, it may also help slow or even stop the outbreak. And your inclusion in a state’s outbreak numbers is confidential.

Many walk-in clinics and minute clinics, urgent care facilities, and even some emergency rooms will not report positive cyclospora tests to their state health department. Some family and general practitioner clinics will, but not all do. And most doctors won’t order the test unless specifically requested by the patient.

So to protect your health, ask for the test.

Pritzker Hageman Food Safety Lawyers

If you or a loved one have been sickened with a cyclospora infection after eating recalled Fresh Express or store brand bagged salads, please contact our experienced lawyers for help at 1-888-377-8900 or 612-338-0202.

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