America Brain-Eating Amoeba: In America, the matter of death of a person due to brain eating amoeba is in headlines. In this person in Charlotte County, Florida, this infection has allegedly spread due to daily cleaning of the nose with tap water. After the death of this person, the people of this area are avoiding washing their face with water. The Florida Department of Health has confirmed the death of a man after being infected with a brain-eating amoeba.
Amoeba enters the body through the nose and then travels towards the brain. It destroys the brain tissue which causes a harmful infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. Infection is mostly fatal.
What are the symptoms of brain eating amoeba?
Early symptoms of this infection include headache, fever, nausea, vomiting, loss of balance, seizures and stiff neck. If the condition becomes serious then it can also turn into coma. Records show that 97 percent of those who contracted the disease died and only four of 154 patients survived infection in the US between 1962 and 2021.
According to media reports, the Floridian man’s case was the first to occur in the US during the winter months. Epidemiologist Dr. Mobin Rathore advised all Charlotte County residents to avoid washing their faces with tap water during this time. Residents have been asked to first boil water and then use it.
What is a brain-eating amoeba?
Naegleria fowleri, also known as the brain-eating amoeba, is a single-celled organism that is visible only with a microscope. It is found in warm freshwater bodies such as lakes, rivers, hot springs and in soil. It infects people after coming in contact while swimming or bathing in lakes and rivers. It can also happen when people use infected tap water to clean their nose and sinuses.
Once the amoeba reaches the brain through the nose, it destroys the brain tissue and causes primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). “Infection with Naegleria fowleri is extremely rare and can occur only when water contaminated with the amoeba enters the body through the nose,” the Florida Department of Health tweeted on Friday.
Is there any cure for this?
The department said that it will not infect a person by drinking contaminated water. This happens when contaminated water enters the nose. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, US, it is not found in salt water. Some treatments are available, but effective long-term treatments are yet to be identified. Currently, PAM is treated with a combination of drugs, including amphotericin B, azithromycin, fluconazole, rifampin, miltefosine, and dexamethasone, the CDC said.
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