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Association between Cryptosporidium infection and animal exposure in HIV-infected individuals.

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  • 1AIDS Prevention Studies and Pediatric Infectious Disease, University of California, San Francisco, USA.

Abstract

Cryptosporidium causes a debilitating illness in immunocompromised individuals, yet the source of sporadic Cryptosporidium infections is unknown. Because early cases of cryptosporidiosis were associated with animals, and pets are a source of companionship to individuals with AIDS, determination of the risk of cryptosporidiosis associated with pets is important. To assess this risk, we conducted a case-control study of HIV-infected individuals with and without cryptosporidiosis. No statistically significant difference in the rate of overall pet ownership, cat ownership, or bird ownership was found between the two groups. Dog ownership reached borderline statistical significance; 15 of 48 (31%) cases owned a dog, compared with 17 of 99 (17%) controls (odds ratio [OR] = 2.19; p = .05; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.9-5.3). No statistically significant differences between cases and controls were found in the frequency of surface water ingestion, rural exposure, travel history, or contact with diarrheic individuals. Our findings indicate that pets do not represent a major risk factor for acquisition of Cryptosporidium for HIV-infected individuals. Whether dog ownership presents a minimal risk for cryptosporidiosis needs further investigation.

PMID:
9436763
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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