Sunday, 26 May, 2019

Doctors blame tap water in neti pot for brain-eating amoeba

An MRI of the Seattle woman’s brain in January 2018. Doctors initially thought the ringed lesion on the left was a tumor because the woman had a history of breast cancer Woman Uses Neti Pot, Ends Up With Brain-Eating Amoeba
Gustavo Carr | 07 December, 2018, 22:08

However during surgery, they discovered it was something much more unusual. "We didn't have any clue what was going on, but when we got the actual tissue we could see it was the amoeba", Cobbs added.

A variety of types of amoeba can cause deadly brain infections, which can also be contracted from getting fresh water in the nose while swimming.

Doctors are warning people about the dangers of using non-sterile water in a neti pot after a 69-year-old Seattle woman died from brain-eating amoebas.

"This is extremely rare".

Most cases of brain eating amoebas have been found in places like California, Arizona and Texas but Dr. Cobbs did say that over time, because of climate change, the amoeba could learn to survive in cooler areas like here in Washington State.

Doctors amazed after man coughs up blood clot of lung bronchial tree
Along with blood and mucus, he brought up a his left bronchial tree - a series of tubes that distribute air to his lungs. Measuring six inched in length, the clot maps out a near-perfect map of the right bronchial system of the lung.

The specific amoeba that killed the Seattle woman moves slowly, which is why it went undetected for a year.

Unfortunately, this woman became one of these fatalities, dying just one month after the surgery. There have only been around 200 reported cases of infection worldwide, although around 70 of those cases were in the US alone, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her doctor told her it was rosacea and prescribed an ointment, according to the report. Within a week, she was in a coma, and her family made a decision to take her off life support. It appeared to be a relatively common form of brain tumor, so they promptly put her on the operating table.

The woman died a month later, and according to a study published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, doctors believe she became infected when she used Brita-filtered tap water in her neti pot - a teapot-like vessel used to flush out nasal passages - instead of saline or sterile water to treat a sinus infection.

Such infections are very rare. The Food and Drug Administration recommends that only distilled or sterile water be used for sinus irrigation.

"Most of the cases reported in the United States where this happen are from people using shallow well water or other sources that are known to be at higher risk of contamination", she told Global News.