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Cyclosporiasis Cases Linked To Fresh Cilantro From Mexico

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Texas health officials have determined that the state’s cyclosporiasis outbreak could be traced to cilantro imported from Puebla, Mexico.

Cyclosporiasis is an intestinal illness caused by consuming food or water contaminated with the Cyclospora parasite.

The Texas Department of State Health Services investigated four restaurant clusters in North Texas, which included 21 people who got ill. They reported eating food that had cilantro within two weeks before becoming sick.

Health officials did not find cilantro contaminated with Cyclospora, but they were able to find a “strong epidemiological link” between the two.

166 cases of cyclosporiasis have been reported in 2014, with most of the cases coming from North Texas residents. Dallas County had the most cases in the state, with 38. It’s unknown whether all illnesses are linked to cilantro.

The health department has also determined the cyclosporiasis outbreak has seemed to have ended. 

Former KERA staffer Krystina Martinez was an assistant producer. She produced local content for Morning Edition and KERANews.org. She also produced The Friday Conversation, a weekly series of conversations with North Texas newsmakers. Krystina was also the backup newscaster for the Texas Standard.