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5 Iowa Counties Report Cases of Rare Parasite Cyclospora

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa - A rare parasite is giving people diarrhea for an average of 57 days.

Five Iowa counties are reporting cases of the parasite Cyclospora. That number includes Linn County, where three news cases have been documented. At least six people are suffering in Linn County. Those cases in Linn County bump the state total to 13.

Cyclospora is a rare bug. In the past two decades, only 10 cases have been reported.

Health officials say the best way to avoid getting sick from produce, such as vegetables or fruit, is to wash raw produce before eating it.

If the fruit or vegetable has a smooth surface, rub it with your fingers. For produce with a rougher surface, like cantaloupe or avocado, use a produce brush. A toothbrush will also work.