Territorians warned on food hygiene Crypto bug cases double

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 4th April 2012

A notable rise in the number of cases of the stomach bug Cryptosporidium in the Northern Territory has prompted the Government of the Northern Territory to urge Territorians to practice good hygiene and food safety practices.

“Cryptosporidiosis, or “crypto”, is a disease caused by the parasite Cryptosporidium parvum. It can be spread by ingesting food or water that has been contaminated by people infected by the parasite.

According to the Northern Territory Government, 114 cases have been reported so far this year.

Director of the Centre for Disease Control, Dr Vicki Krause, said this is more than twice the number of expected gastroenteritis cases this year caused by the Cryptosporidium parasite.

Dr Krause said, “The current hot and humid weather is providing the perfect conditions for the bug to thrive and we are expecting to see more cases.

“It’s important that infected people don’t prepare or handle food or drinks that will be consumed by others,” she said.

Common symptoms include watery diarrhoea and stomach cramps, which may last for a few days but can continue for several weeks.