West Virginia residents may have heard about an increase in reports of a parasitic infection called Crypto that is largely associated with swimming pools and public water parks. The CDC says that there were 32 cases reported in 2016, which was double the rate reported in 2014. This was according to early data published in the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The parasite can spread when someone swallows something that has come into the feces of a sick person. It is not uncommon for a person to be exposed to the parasite after ingesting water that may have been contaminated by diarrhea. It is not yet known if the additional reports indicate an increased risk of Crypto or if it is the result of better lab methods for identifying it. For reference, there were 20 such cases reported in 2011 and 16 in 2012.
There are several tips that a person may follow to reduce the odds of being infected or to protect a child against being infected. For instance, swimmers are encouraged to refrain from swallowing pool water, and parents are urged to stop their kids from swimming with anyone who may be sick. Swimmers are also encouraged to take a shower after getting out of the water to rinse off any germs that may linger.
Those who get sick after using someone else’s pool may wish to file a premises liability lawsuit. If successful, an individual may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages or lost future earnings. If the victim is a minor, his or her parent or guardian may file a lawsuit on his or her behalf. Negligence may be established by pointing to a lack of oversight or effort to remove dangerous hazards despite previous instances of swimmers getting sick.