Diarrhea Home > Giardia Life Cycle

Giardia is found in soil, food, water, or surfaces that have been contaminated with the feces from infected humans or animals. The life cycle of Giardia starts with the transmission phase, when the parasite is accidentally consumed. This life cycle is an ongoing process of parasite ingestion, cyst multiplication within the intestine, and the passing of germs through bowel movements.
Once a person becomes infected with Giardia, the parasite begins to multiply within the intestines, and symptoms begin to appear within two weeks.
The Giardia life cycle can be broken as soon as a diagnosis is made and proper treatment can be administered to cure the infection.
(Click Giardia for more detailed information about the life cycle of Giardia, including who is at increased risk for infection and suggestions for preventing the transmission of the parasite.)
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Last reviewed by: Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
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