Summer, waterborne illness are here

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted June 9, 2008

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More recreational water illness outbreaks were reported in 2007 than ever before, and these numbers are expected to continue to increase, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. These illnesses, caused most often by Cryptosporidium, are spread by swallowing, breathing or having contact with germs in the water of swimming pools, spas, lakes, rivers or oceans.

Between 2004 and 2007, the number of Cryptosporidium cases tripled. At the same time, the number of such outbreaks linked to swimming pools more than doubled. And, because Cryptosporidium is chlorine-resistant, even a well-maintained pool can transmit this parasite.

Experts recommend that people practice "healthy swimming habits" to help minimize the risks of transmission. These include not swimming when ill with diarrhea and not swallowing water.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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