What is the prognosis of cryptosporidiosis?

Updated: Nov 11, 2019
  • Author: Melinda B Tanabe, MD; Chief Editor: Michael Stuart Bronze, MD  more...
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Answer

In most healthy individuals, Cryptosporidium infection–induced diarrhea is usually self-limited. However, diarrhea is often prolonged (>1 week) or persistent (>2 weeks). In patients who are severely immunocompromised, cryptosporidiosis may be chronic, severe, sometimes fatal, and with extraintestinal manifestations.

Individuals with AIDS and cryptosporidiosis tend to develop chronic symptoms more often, and about 10% have a fulminant course. [1, 15] Antiretroviral treatment improves outcomes.

Immunocompetent children with Cryptosporidium infection generally fare well. However, persistent abdominal pain, loose stools, and extraintestinal sequelae (eg, joint pain, eye pain, headache, dizzy spells, fatigue) have been reported, especially with C hominis infection. [10]


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