Causes and Symptoms of Waterborne Illness
Waterborne illness is caused by recreational or drinking water contaminated by disease-causing microbes or pathogens. Of note, many waterborne pathogens can also be acquired by consuming contaminated food or beverages, from contact with animals or their environment, or through person-to-person spread.
- Recreational Water Illnesses
Answers to frequently asked questions about recreational water illnesses.
Waterborne illnesses can cause a variety of symptoms. While diarrhea and vomiting are the most commonly reported symptoms of waterborne illness, other symptoms can include skin, ear, respiratory, or eye problems.
Commonly recognized waterborne infections are:
- Blue-Green Algal Blooms and Microcystin
coli O157:H7 Infection (E. coli O157)
and Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome (HUS)
- Legionellosis (Legionella)
- Naegleria and Amebic Meningoencephalitis
- Norovirus Infection
(aka Norwalk virus, calicivirus, viral gastroenteritis)
Do you suspect you
have a waterborne illness?
Please report your suspected waterborne illness to the Minnesota Department of Health.
- Healthy Swimming
CDC. Attention: Non-MDH link