Monday, 25 March 2019
Latest news
Main » Woman dies from brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot

Woman dies from brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot

08 December 2018
Woman dies from brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot

She used tap water that had been filtered with a Brita Water Purifier.

A Seattle woman died after becoming infected with a brain-eating amoeba.

The 69-year-old, whose name was not given, had a lingering sinus infection.

The woman used tap water in her neti pot.

The Times reported that the woman shot the contaminated water far up her nasal cavity toward olfactory nerves in the upper part of her nasal cavity, causing the brain-eating infection.

An elderly woman was killed by a brain-eating amoeba after using filtered tap water to clear her sinuses.

She contracted an amoeba called Balamuthia mandrillaris. Doctors thought it was a rash and prescribed an antibiotic ointment, but that provided no relief. She arrived in the hospital's emergency room after suffering seizures.

Dr. Charles Cobbs said when he operated it was just dead brain tissue. It wasn't until the woman suffered a stroke, and had CT scans done of her brain, that the brain tumour was diagnosed - or more accurately, misdiagnosed. The mass was growing, and new lesions were starting to show up. Infectious disease doctors contacted the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta and they sent medicine for the rare condition, but the woman could not be saved.

According to the CDC, most cases of Balamuthia mandrillaris aren't diagnosed until immediately before death or after death, so doctors don't have a lot of experience treating the amoeba and know little about how a person becomes infected. It was declared a distinct species in 1993, according to the report. "There's been about 200 cases world-wide", Cobbs said, according to Q13 News. The fatality rate is almost 100 percent.

The amoeba is similar to Naegleria fowleri, which has been the culprit in several high-profile cases. That tap water was filled with tiny amoebas that ate away at her brain cells. Instead, distilled or sterile water should be used, or boiled and cooled water.

The amoeba causes a "very rare disease that is usually fatal" called granulomatous amoebic encephalitis (GAE). "This precedent led us to suspect the same route of entry for the ... amoeba in our case". Now a case study recently published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases has shed light on how the amoeba entered her brain.

A person can not get infected from swallowing water contaminated with it, and it can not pass from person to person.

The amoebas can be found in fresh-water sources around Puget Sound but aren't present in city-treated water, Liz Coleman, a spokeswoman for the Environmental Public Health division of the state's Department of Health, told the paper.