POSTED: Thursday, July 25, 2013 - 1:13pm
UPDATED: Friday, July 26, 2013 - 8:06am
Smith County, TX (KETK) — Two cases of the stomach bug Cyclospora have been reported in Smith County.
Several cases had been reported across Texas over the past few weeks, and now the North East Texas Public Health District tells KETK, the infection continues to spread.
NET Health says that the two reported cases in Smith County are not related, and they are continuing to investigate.
As of Wednesday, 285 cases had been reported to the Centers for Disease Control, and at least 18 people had been hospitalized.
Authorities believe the illness is linked to contaminated produce, but have not identified the source. Experts say that thoroughly washing fruits and vegetables before eating them should limit the risk, especially if it is a foreign import.
Nine states so far have confirmed cases, but Iowa, Nebraska nad Texas have the most.
Symptoms of Cyclospora include diarrhea, loss of appetite, fever and fatigue, and they can last for weeks. However, it can be treated with antibiotics.
NBC News contributed to this report.