Skip to main content
Giardiasis

Giardiasis is a stomach bug caused by a tiny parasite.

Symptoms of giardiasis include smelly diarrhoea, burps that smell like eggs, tummy pain and bloating

Giardiasis is treated with antibiotics. Stay off school or work until your symptoms have stopped for 2 days to avoid spreading the infection.

Giardiasis is often caught from water that's not been treated to kill germs. Most people get it while travelling in developing countries.

Read more on the NHS website.

Symptoms of giardiasis include smelly diarrhoea, burps that smell like eggs, tummy pain and bloating

Symptoms of giardiasis

The main symptoms of giardiasis are:

You can also have it and be able to spread it to others without having any symptoms.

Read more on the NHS website.

Giardiasis is treated with antibiotics. Stay off school or work until your symptoms have stopped for 2 days to avoid spreading the infection.

Medical treatments

Your GP may send off a sample of your poo for tests to check if you have giardiasis.

It's treated with antibiotics for a few days. Your symptoms should stop in about a week, but they can sometimes last longer.

Important

Go back to a GP if you still have symptoms a week after starting treatment.

They might give you more antibiotics or refer you to a specialist for treatment.

Sometimes the people you live with may also need to be tested and treated.

Self-care

Important

You're most infectious from when your symptoms start until 2 days after they have passed.

Stay off school or work until your symptoms have stopped for 2 days.

While you're recovering:


Do

  • drink lots of fluids to avoid dehydration, such as water and squash – if you're well hydrated, your pee should be light yellow or clear
  • give your baby breast or bottle feeds as usual if you or your baby are ill
  • wash your hands with soap and water frequently
  • wash dirty clothing and bedding separately on a hot wash
  • clean toilet seats, flush handles, taps, surfaces and door handles every day

Don't

  • do not drink alcohol while taking your antibiotics – alcohol can react with the main antibiotics used to treat giardiasis
  • do not prepare food for other people, if possible
  • do not share towels, wash cloths, flannels, cutlery and utensils
  • do not use a swimming pool until 2 weeks after your symptoms stop

Read more on the NHS website.

Giardiasis is often caught from water that's not been treated to kill germs. Most people get it while travelling in developing countries.

Read more on the NHS website.