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About giardia infection (giardiasis)

Giardia infection is an intestinal infection marked by abdominal cramps, bloating, nausea and watery diarrhea. Giardia infection is caused by a parasite that is found worldwide, especially in areas with poor sanitation and unsafe water.

Giardia infection (giardiasis) is one of the most common waterborne diseases in the United States. The parasites are found in backcountry streams and lakes, but also in municipal water supplies, swimming pools and spas. Giardia infection can also be transmitted through food and person-to-person contact.

Infections usually clear up within six weeks. But you may have recurrent episodes or have intestinal problems long after the parasites are gone. Several drugs are generally effective against giardia parasites, but not everyone responds to them. Prevention is your best defense.

Symptoms

Some people with giardia infection never develop signs or symptoms but still carry the parasite and can spread it to others through their stool. For those who do get sick, signs and symptoms usually appear one to two weeks after exposure and may include: Continue reading About giardia infection (giardiasis)