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Durham, Orange swimmers sickened by parasite

Posted December 12, 2013

Three swim team members from Durham and Orange counties have tested positive for cryptosporidiosis, health department officials said Thursday.

Another three swim team members have reported symptoms of the disease, which is caused by a microscopic parasite, and are awaiting test results.

Officials did not release the ages of the swim team members who were sickened or where they swam.

Cryptosporidium is found in fecal matter and is one of the most common causes of waterborne disease in the United States, according to the National Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The parasite has an outer shell that enables it to survive for long periods outside the body, and it is resistant to chlorine.

Symptoms usually develop within 12 days of exposure and include diarrhea, stomach cramps, a low fever and nausea. The infection can be life-threatening for people with weakened immune systems.

The health departments in Orange and Durham counties are working with pool managers to stop the spread of the parasite, and letters have been sent to parents and coaches.

Officials are asking residents not to use local pools if they have had diarrhea in the past two weeks or are experiencing symptoms.
 

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  • Ex-Republican Dec 12, 2013

    It creeps me out to think of swimming in a pool with a bunch of young kids and really old people. Both groups are suspect when it comes to control of bodily functions.

    According to http://health.howstuffworks.com/skin-care/information/anatomy/shed-skin-cells.htm, a person looses 30 - 40 thousand skill cells in an hour.

    Then you may swallow some of that in pool water. This is the same pool water that's been in other peoples' mouths, nostrils and other orifices.

    All this considered I'll take burning eyes from too much chlorine any day!

  • heelsgirl05 Dec 12, 2013

    It was most likely the sportsplex. Alot of swim clubs from durham and chapel hill use their lap pool and it is not far from the durham county line, so a lot of families from near there go there to swim

  • mafiamic Dec 12, 2013

    Cryptosporidium is found in fecal matter and is one of the most common causes of waterborne disease in the United States,

    So common that's why we never hear of it?
    Most places you go to from hotels to public places if something like this happens or blood around the pool or accidents? they close the pool down to clean it.
    Someone should have known what happened before it was discovered.

  • jackaroe123 Dec 12, 2013

    This is why my kids go to charter pools.

  • yankee1 Dec 12, 2013

    Let's add a little twist here. Anyone notice the unending pressure to switch your cleaners and disinfectants from the things you have used for years and knew would work to this environmentally friendly mixture of herbs and spices that supposedly is equally effective? Notice an uptick in illnesses and a rebirth of diseases once pretty scarce? Look how successful replacing DDT with mosquito nets. Not so much! Just food for thought.

  • jmc3 Dec 12, 2013

    they don't want to say because its DURHAM. Don't want to hurt anyones feelings at the behest of saving a life. hopefully the pools have been closed for cleaning. LetsBeFair

    I was in Raleigh last week and caught a cold. I'm blaming the City of Raleigh and everybody in Wake County. I should have stayed in Durham!

  • SanS Dec 12, 2013

    "or where they swam" ..... HELLO....at the very least they SHOULD release that information? Why, for many reasons if you think about it. One because some kids will ignore what officials tell them not to do, so more could become infected unless the police is there 24x7. Also it keeps parents in the know so they can take appropriate actions with their kids. Someone is probably saying well all they have to do is lock the doors, actually no because again if they want in they usually find a way in. Just saying

  • Frank Downtown Dec 12, 2013

    Many cat owners get it from cleaning litter boxes. This is why you should wear a mask when cleaning litter boxes.

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Dec 12, 2013

    Thousands of years ago, people would have attributed this to demons and gods. It wouldn't be until the 19th Century that germs were understood. (or epilepsy, mental illness, etc.)

    When science advances, superstition recedes.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Germ_theory_of_disease

  • Phyxius1 Dec 12, 2013

    they don't want to say because its DURHAM. Don't want to hurt anyones feelings at the behest of saving a life. hopefully the pools have been closed for cleaning.
    LetsBeFair

    Really..It was only time before someone placed the blame on Durham somehow. Nowhere in the story does it say it came from a Durham pool. They could have had a swim meet in a pool elsewhere where both Orange and Durham students attended and brought it back here as far as we know. Checking the pools where the affected students are from is a good start. How do you make this a Durham county issue on the non-release of pool names? Orange county is involved too...

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