Seattle woman dies from brain-eating amoebas in neti pot

Ebony Scott
December 9, 2018

If you're using a neti pot to pour water through your nasal passages and clean out your sinus cavities, you should only use sterile or saline water, doctors have warned after a Seattle woman died from a brain infection. When doctors did a CT scan, they found what they thought was a tumor but later discovered was dead tissue in her brain during an operation.

"There were these amoebae all over the place just eating brain cells".

'We didn't have any clue what was going on, but when we got the actual tissue, we could see it was the amoeba'. Now a case study recently published in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases has shed light on how the amoeba entered her brain.

What happened: The woman had been filling her neti pot with unfiltered water and using it to try to clear up a sinus infection. Researchers believe that she contracted the amoeba while using the neti pot because she used filtered tap water rather than saline or sterile water, the latter of which is recommended. That tap water was filled with tiny amoebas that ate away at her brain cells. The CDC says it's possible that the amoeba may also live in water.

Who is new CDU leader Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer?
However, another favourite is a onetime rival of the Chancellor, former parliamentary leader Friedrich Merz. Regardless of which course the CDU charts, it is ironically the SPD that could decide Merkel's fate.

Luis Valbuena, Jose Castillo die in car crash in Venezuela
The chauffeur and infielder Carlos Rivero , a teammate of Valbuena and Castillo who was also in the vehicle , survived. Valbuena, 33, and Castillo, 37, had finished playing a game for the Cardenales de Lara in the Dominican Winter League.

Former Attorney General William Barr contender for old job
An attorney general opposed to the investigation could theoretically move to cut funding or block certain investigative steps. Rosenstein appointed Mueller following Sessions's recusal, a decision that angered the president.

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

"Improper nasal irrigation has been reported as a method of infection for the comparably insidious amoeba", the doctors say in the research paper about the Seattle woman. Globally, only 200 infections have ever been recorded, of which 70 occurred in the United States.

Eventually she reportedly developed a rash on her nose and raw skin near her nostrils, which was misdiagnosed as rosacea, a skin condition. They hope her case will let other doctors know to consider an amoeba infection if a patient gets a sore or rash on the nose after rinsing their sinuses. Some tap water contains low levels of organisms - such as bacteria and protozoa, including amoebas - that may be safe to swallow because stomach acid kills them. That said, the woman's case was rare; there were only three similar cases in the USA from 2008 to 2017, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Naegleria fowleri is the most documented, Cope said, because it acts quickly, causing an infection that leads to death in just a few days. He was believed to have gotten infected while surfing in an indoor water park in Texas. But then Hopkins pathologists came back with a verdict: The infection looked "amoebic", said Cobbs, who thought, "that's ridiculous", upon hearing the news. "At least I hope not".

Other reports by GizPress

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER