Epidemiologic and environmental investigation of a recreational water outbreak caused by two genotypes of Cryptosporidium parvum in Ohio in 2000

Els Mathieu, Deborah A. Levy, Fran Veverka, Mary Kay Parrish, John Sarisky, Nancy Shapiro, Stephanie Johnston, Thomas Handzel, Allen Hightower, Lihua Xiao, Yeuk Mui Lee, Steve York, Michael Arrowood, Robin Lee, Jeffrey L. Jones

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

22 Scopus citations


In August 2000, the Ohio Department of Health requested assistance to investigate a cryptosporidiosis outbreak with more than 700 clinical case-patients. An epidemiologic and environmental investigation was conducted. Stool specimens, pool water, and sand filter samples were analyzed. A community-based case-control study showed that the main risk factor was swimming in pool A (odds ratio [OR] = 42, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 12.3-144.9). This was supported by results of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis, which showed the presence of both the human and bovine genotypes of Cryptosporidium parvum in case-patients and samples from the filter of pool A. A pool-based case-control study indicated that the highest risk was related to exposure to pool water via the mouth (OR = 5.1, 95% CI = 2.1-12.5) or to pool sprinklers (OR = 2.5, 95% CI = 1.3-4.7). Fecal accidents at the pool were documented. Records indicated that the pool met local health regulations. The outbreak, caused by co-infection with two C. parvum genotypes (human and bovine), underscores the need for concerted action to improve public health policies for recreational water facilities and enhanced education regarding the potential for disease transmission through pools.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)582-589
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2004


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases

Cite this