Each summer, the subtropical parasite Cyclospora makes its way to the U.S. on imported produce causing food poisoning symptoms that, if untreated, can last more than two months. Last summer, two Cyclospora outbreaks sickened more than 700 people. One of them was linked to Fresh Express salad sold at McDonald’s. The other was linked to Del Monte vegetable trays sold at Kwik Trip stores.

Symptoms of a Cyclospora infection, called cyclosporiasis, include profuse bouts of diarrhea, abdominal cramps, nausea, headache, fatigue, weight loss and other flu-like symptoms. The diarrhea is often explosive and sometimes alternates with bouts of constipation. People who have compromised immune systems tend to get more severe cases of cyclosporiasis that last for months.


A CDC colorized photomicrograph of a stool sample that contains four Cyclospora oocysts.

Pritzker Hageman has represented clients in every major Cyclospora outbreak in the last five years. Our Cyclospora Team represented half of the 250 people sickened in the Del Monte/Kwik Trip vegetable tray outbreak and filed the first McDonald’s Fresh Express lawsuit in Iowa, one of the hardest hit states in that outbreak.

Cyclospora is transmitted via the fecal-oral route, meaning people get sick when they eat food contaminated with human or animal feces that contain the parasite in its early stages.  In recent years, there has been a major outbreak each summer, several have been linked to imported Cilantro. These big outbreaks combined with a new detection method used by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) may contribute to an uptick in what has historically been considered the average number of cases – 200,  between May and September, peak season in the U.S.

If you have been sickened by Cyclospora, contact our experienced Cyclospora Team for a free consultation, by calling 1 (888) 377-8900 (toll-free), sending a text to 612-261-0856, or completing the form below. The call is free and there is no obligation.