- in humans is a diarrheal infection of the small intestine caused by a single-celled protozoan parasite Giardia lamblia.
- giardiasis is caused by the ingestion of infective cysts
- multiple modes of transmission, including person-to-person, water-borne (eg. hikers drinking contaminated stream water from cattle faeces), and venereal
- occurs worldwide
- annual incidence is estimated at 2 million people
- has a wide range of mammalian hosts besides humans, thus making it very difficult to eradicate.
- can be fatal in the immunocompromised such as those with HIV / AIDS
- incubation period 1 to 2 weeks (average 7 days)
- symptoms may last 2 to 6 weeks in healthy individuals although may last longer.
- the majority of infected persons develop gradual symptoms that become recurrent.
- a small number of infected individuals experience an abrupt onset of abdominal cramps, watery diarrhea, vomiting, foul flatus, and fever which may last for 3–4 days before proceeding into a more sub-acute phase.
- stools become greasy and malodorous but do not contain blood or pus because giardiasis does not involve dysenteric symptoms.
- watery diarrhea may cycle with soft stools and constipation
- upper GI symptoms including nausea, early satiety, bloating, substernal burning, egg-smelling halitosis, and acid indigestion may be exacerbated by eating and are generally present in the absence of soft stools.
- anorexia, malaise, fatigue are common
- weight loss affects more than 50% of patients.
- other possible features:
- lactose intolerance
- biliary tract disease
- allergic manifestations such as erythema multiforme, bronchospasm, and urticaria.
- stool for ova and parasites
- can be found on duodenal biopsies
giardiasis.txt · Last modified: 2015/12/03 22:14 by 127.0.0.1