Treatment

If you have blastocystis without signs or symptoms, then you don't need treatment. Mild signs and symptoms may improve on their own within a few days.

Potential medications for treating blastocystis infection include:

  • Antibiotics, such as metronidazole (Flagyl) or tinidazole (Tindamax)
  • Combination medications, such as sulfamethoxazole and trimethoprim (Bactrim, Septra, others)
  • Antiprotozoal medications, such as paromomycin, or nitazoxanide (Alinia)

However, keep in mind that response to medication for blastocystis infection varies greatly from person to person. And, because the symptoms you're having might be unrelated to blastocystis, it's also possible that any improvement may be due to the medication's effect on another organism.

Jan. 07, 2016
References
  1. Leder K, et al. Blastocystis species. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Oct. 31, 2015.
  2. Longo DL, et al., eds. Protozoal infections. In: Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine. 19th ed. New York, N.Y.: The McGraw-Hill Companies; 2015. http://accessmedicine.com. Accessed Oct. 31, 2015.
  3. Turkeltaub JA, et al. The intestinal protozoa: Emerging impact on global health and development. Current Opinion in Gastroenterology. 2015;31:38.
  4. Feldman M, et al. Intestinal protozoa. In: Sleisenger and Fordtran's Gastrointestinal and Liver Disease: Pathophysiology, Diagnosis, Management. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2016. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Oct. 31, 2015.
  5. Oral rehydration solutions: Made at home. Rehydration Project. http://rehydrate.org/solutions/homemade.htm. Accessed Nov. 1, 2015.
  6. Food and water safety. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/page/food-water-safety. Accessed Nov. 1, 2015.
  7. Backer HD. Water disinfection for travelers. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/the-pre-travel-consultation/water-disinfection-for-travelers. Accessed Nov. 1, 2015.
  8. Watson JC, et al. Food and water precautions. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/yellowbook/2016/the-pre-travel-consultation/food-water-precautions. Accessed Nov. 1, 2015.
  9. Handwashing: Clean hands save lives. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. http://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/when-how-handwashing.html. Accessed Nov. 1, 2015.