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Cyclosporiasis is a diarrheal disease caused by the parasite Cyclospora cayetanensis. Infection occurs by ingesting sporulated oocysts, which are the infective form of the parasite. Cyclosporiasis is typically spread through ingestion of food or water contaminated by the feces of an infected person. Outbreaks have been associated with contaminated fresh fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

Cyclospora Infection in New Mexico and the United States

Active, population-based surveillance for Cyclospora has been conducted throughout New Mexico since 2004 as part of the New Mexico Emerging Infections Program (NMEIP) FoodNet system. Medical records for residents of New Mexico with cyclosporiasis are reviewed for demographic and other epidemiologic information. Through this surveillance system New Mexico FoodNet is able to examine and describe Cyclospora infections in the state. Data from New Mexico and other EIP FoodNet sites are aggregated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to generate national estimates.

The number of laboratory-confirmed Cyclospora infections in the FoodNet catchment region and in New Mexico are reflected in the table below. New Mexico has a very low incidence of Cyclospora infection.

Figure 1: Number of Laboratory-Confirmed Cyclospora Infections by Year, New Mexico & All FoodNet Sites, 2004-2011

Figure 1


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Surveillance for Laboratory-Confirmed Sporadic Cases of Cyclosporiasis – United States, 1997–2008. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 2011; 60(SS02): 1-11.