What is the role of imaging studies in the workup of cryptosporidiosis?

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

Imaging studies are not indicated as a first-line diagnostic approach in cryptosporidiosis but can aid in the diagnosis. Abdominal radiography and computed tomography (CT) scanning are nonspecific but may reveal distended loops of bowel, air-fluid levels, and disrupted bowel motility.

When indicated, as guided by symptoms, ultrasonography or CT scanning may reveal an enlarged gallbladder with a thickened wall, dilated or irregular intrahepatic and extrahepatic biliary ducts, and a normal or stenotic distal common bile duct. Cholangiography may reveal beading of the common bile duct or papillary stenosis.

In cases of respiratory involvement, chest radiography is unremarkable, with modest infiltrates or increased bronchial markings.


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