Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas, Texas, Wisconsin and Illinois report Illnesses.

Richard Piersol of the Journal Star reports that health authorities say they are closing in on the source of an outbreak of a rare food-borne illness that has hit Nebraska and Iowa with a vengeance.

The number of Nebraskans confirmed ill with cyclosporiasis has jumped to 62 (updated) since late last week.  The investigation continues in Nebraska and Iowa, where 102 cases have been reported. Other cases have now been reported in Kansas, Texas (at least 42 ill – updated), Wisconsin (7 – updated) and Illinois.

The infection is caused by the parasite cyclospora, which authorities believe probably infected people through fresh vegetables. Eating food or drinking water contaminated with human feces containing the parasite most commonly contracts the illness.

Symptoms of include diarrhea, fatigue, and loss of appetite, weight loss, bloating, intestinal gas, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting, muscle aches and low-grade fever. Untreated, the illness can last two months.