What Are the Serious and Long-term Risks of Cyclospora Infection?
Cyclospora has been associated with a variety of chronic complications such as malabsorption, reactive arthritis, cholecystitis (inflammation of the gallbladder), and, possibly, Guillain-Barré Syndrome. Since Cyclospora infections tend to respond to the appropriate treatment, complications are more likely to occur in individuals who are not treated or not treated promptly. Extraintestinal infection also appears to occur more commonly in individuals with a compromised immune system.
Although human cyclosporiasis is usually not fatal in developed countries such as the United States, protracted diarrhea often leads to dehydration, particularly in infants who are at greatest risk of severe dehydration and death, especially if cyclosporiasis is complicated by infections with other pathogens (viral, bacterial, or parasitic—e.g., Cryptosporidium and Giardia), malnutrition, or malabsorption, particularly in underprivileged communities.