Gastric involvement in AIDS associated cryptosporidiosis

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Abstract

Background

Cryptosporidiosis has been shown to be a common cause of diarrhoea in both immunocompetent and immunosuppressed individuals. There are very few data on the distribution of Cryptosporidium parvum along the gastrointestinal tract.

Aims

To evaluate the location of Cryptosporidium parasites in the digestive tract of patients with AIDS.

Methods

Gastrointestinal localisation of C parvum was studied in 71 patients with AIDS who underwent upper and/or lower endoscopy with biopsy for chronic diarrhoeal illness and/or other gastrointestinal disorders of unexplained origin.

Results

Twenty four individuals (33.8%) were positive for C parvum, of which 16 (88.9%) had parasites in the gastric epithelium. Most patients with gastric localisation of C parvum did not show specific symptoms indicating the presence of this parasite in the stomach.

Conclusions

Gastric involvement in AIDS related cryptosporidiosis is more frequent than expected, but no clear correlation between gastric location and related clinical and pathological features was observed.

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