Giardiasis differential diagnosis

Jump to navigation Jump to search

Giardiasis Microchapters


Patient Information


Historical Perspective




Differentiating Giardiasis from other Diseases

Epidemiology and Demographics

Risk Factors

Natural History, Complications and Prognosis


History and Symptoms

Physical Examination

Laboratory Findings

Other Diagnostic Studies


Medical Therapy


Cost-Effectiveness of Therapy

Future or Investigational Therapies

Case Studies

Case #1

Giardiasis differential diagnosis On the Web

Most recent articles

Most cited articles

Review articles

CME Programs

Powerpoint slides


American Roentgen Ray Society Images of Giardiasis differential diagnosis

All Images
Echo & Ultrasound
CT Images

Ongoing Trials at Clinical

US National Guidelines Clearinghouse

NICE Guidance

FDA on Giardiasis differential diagnosis

CDC on Giardiasis differential diagnosis

Giardiasis differential diagnosis in the news

Blogs on Giardiasis differential diagnosis

Directions to Hospitals Treating Giardiasis

Risk calculators and risk factors for Giardiasis differential diagnosis

Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Yazan Daaboul, M.D.; Serge Korjian M.D.


Giardiasis must be differentiated from other causes of abdominal pain, bloating, acute or chronic diarrhea, and weight loss, such as other infectious causes of gastroenteritis, including bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic pathogens, in addition to non-infectious causes, including acute pancreatitis, appendicitis, bowel obstruction, diverticulitis, drug reaction, hyperthyroidism, inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, lactose intolerance, Whipple disease, tropical sprue, and lymphoma.

Differentiating Giardiasis from other Diseases

  • Giardiasis must be differentiated from other causes of acute or chronic diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain, and fever (less common).
  • Differential diagnosis of giardiasis includes the following:

Infectious Differential Diagnoses

Non-infectious Differential Diagnoses

The following are the non-infectious differential diagnoses of E. coli enteritis:

To view a comprehensive list of abdominal pain differential diagnoses, click here.
To view a comprehensive list of diarrhea differential diagnoses, click here.

Giardiasis must be differentiated from other diseases that may cause chronic diarrhea, weight loss, and abdominal pain especially in immunocompromised patients.

Disease Prominent clinical findings Laboratory or radiological findings
Chronic giardiasis[1]
  • Disease might be asymptomatic or cause gastroenteritis (but without any biliary involvement)
  • Gastroenteritis usually resolves spontaneously within 14 days.
  • Microscopic identification of the organism in the stool: The oocysts appear red on staining with modified acid fast staining
  • PCR: Most specific and sensitive diagnostic tool. PCR is expensive and used in limited cases.
Cystoisosporiasis (isosporiasis)[3]
  • Isospora ova or parasites can be visualized on stool microscopic examination.
  • Upper GI endoscopy may used for excluding other esophageal or gastric disease and obtaining specimens for histopathology.
Tropical sprue[4]


  1. Thompson RC (2000). "Giardiasis as a re-emerging infectious disease and its zoonotic potential". Int. J. Parasitol. 30 (12–13): 1259–67. PMID 11113253.
  2. Sánchez-Vega JT, Tay-Zavala J, Aguilar-Chiu A, Ruiz-Sánchez D, Malagón F, Rodríguez-Covarrubias JA, Ordóñez-Martínez J, Calderón-Romero L (2006). "Cryptosporidiosis and other intestinal protozoan infections in children less than one year of age in Mexico City". Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg. 75 (6): 1095–8. PMID 17172373.
  3. Current WL, Garcia LS (1991). "Cryptosporidiosis". Clin. Microbiol. Rev. 4 (3): 325–58. PMC 358202. PMID 1889046.
  4. Klipstein FA, Schenk EA (1975). "Enterotoxigenic intestinal bacteria in tropical sprue. II. Effect of the bacteria and their enterotoxins on intestinal structure". Gastroenterology. 68 (4 Pt 1): 642–55. PMID 1091526.