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[Cryptosporidium spp.]

Treatment Information

Rapid loss of fluids because of diarrhea can be managed by fluid and electrolyte replacement. Infection in healthy, immunocompetent persons is self-limited. Nitazoxanide has been approved for treatment of diarrhea caused by Cryptosporidium in immunocompetent patients. Immunocompromised persons and those in poor health are at highest risk for severe illness. The effectiveness of nitazoxanide in immunosuppressed persons is unclear.  For persons with AIDS, anti-retroviral therapy, which improves immune status, will also reduce oocyst excretion and decrease diarrhea associated with cryptosporidiosis. For additional information, see the recommendations in the Guidelines for preventing opportunistic infections among HIV-infected persons -- 2002.


  1. Kaplan JE, Masur H, Holmes KK. Guidelines for preventing opportunistic infections among HIV-infected persons. MMWR June 14, 2002; 51(RR08):1-46.
  2. Morgan-Ryan UM, Fall A, Ward LA, Hijjawi N, Sulaiman I, Fayer R, et al. Cryptosporidium hominis n. sp. (Apicomplexa: Cryptosporidiidae) from Homo sapiens. J Eukaryot Microbiol 2002;49:433-440.

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This information is provided as an informational resource for licensed health care providers as guidance only. It is not intended as a substitute for professional judgment.

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  • Page last reviewed November 29, 2013
  • Page last updated November 29, 2013
  • Content source: Global Health - Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria
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