More than 20 Iowans Sick From Rare Parasite - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

More than 20 Iowans Sick From Rare Parasite

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An intestinal illness that causes diarrhea lasting an average of nearly two months has been identified in nine Iowa counties.

The Iowa Department of Public Health says it has identified 22 cases of cyclospora infections.

People are infected by eating food or drinking water contaminated with infected human feces. Illness is caused by a parasite. Watery diarrhea, severe tiredness, and nausea are common symptoms and usually begin within a week.

Most of those now ill began to notice symptoms in June.

Linn County has the most cases with 10. Others are reported in Benton, Des Moines, Fayette, Mills, O'Brien, Polk, Van Buren, and Webster counties.

Other Midwest states also have cases including Nebraska.

Health officials recommend washing fresh fruits and vegetables thoroughly although no specific source has been identified yet.

For more information on cyclospora, go to the Iowa Department of Public Health website.