Isolated cryptosporidium outbreak investigated

There are six confirmed cases of a non-life threatening intestinal illness, all possibly related to one event, according to the Oneida County Department of Health.

The Health Department is investigating the origin of the cryptosporidium outbreak. Officials are looking into the possibility of the outbreak stemming from the recent Farmfest event, "but caution that no direct causal link has yet been determined," the department stated.

Oneida County has advised school nurses and the administrations of all districts who attended the event of the reported cases. Letters are going out to parents in the two schools districts that have reported cases of the disease among their students. School nurses are on alert for symptoms and will report to the Oneida County Health Department if any are observed.

Cryptosporidium is a microscopic parasite that causes the intestinal illness. It is usually a self-limiting illness with watery diarrhea as the most common symptom. Average incubation is one to 12 days. If symptoms are present, the Health Department recommends treatment of the symptoms, and if the symptoms become severe, a personal physician should be contacted.

County officials have been in contact and consultation with the state Department of Health and have jointly concluded that at this time there is no ongoing public health threat.