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Cryptosporidiosis (Cryptosporidium spp.)
2011 Case Definition

CSTE Position Statement(s)

  • 10-ID-15

Clinical Description

A gastrointestinal illness characterized by diarrhea, abdominal cramping, fever, nausea, vomiting and/or anorexia.

Laboratory Criteria for Diagnosis

Probable: The detection of Cryptosporidium antigen by immunodiagnostic methods.*

Confirmed: The detection of Cryptosporidium organisms or DNA in stool, intestinal fluid, tissue samples, biopsy specimens, or other biological sample.**

* Test results known to be obtained with commercially-available immunochromatographic card tests are limited to meeting "probable" case criteria due to a recent report of unacceptably high rates of false-positive results.1

** The confirmed laboratory criteria include detection of Cryptosporidium by established laboratory methods (e.g., direct fluorescent antibody [DFA] test or polymerase chain reaction [PCR]).

Case Classification


A case that meets the clinical description and has probable criteria for laboratory diagnosis or that is epidemiologically linked to a confirmed case.


A case that meets the clinical description and the respective criteria for laboratory-confirmation as described above.


  1. Clin Infect Dis. 2010 Apr 15;50(8):e53-55).