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Florida resident dies from brain-eating amoeba, uses tap water to clean sinuses

A Florida resident died of a rare infection caused by a brain-eating amoeba after using unboiled tap water to cleanse his sinuses, local and federal officials say.

The Florida Health Department said the incident involved a Charlotte County resident, but no specific details were immediately released.The CDC said the patient died Monday.

The resident, whose identity has not been released, is believed to have contracted Naegleria fowleri after rinsing his sinuses daily with unboiled tap water, according to the CDC.

“The DOH-Charlotte, as part of a multi-agency response, continues to investigate how this outbreak occurred and is working with local utilities to identify potential links and take necessary corrective actions. We are working with them,” the Ministry of Health said.

Naegleria fowleri can infect humans when water containing single-celled organisms enters the body through the nose, usually while swimming or diving in ponds, lakes, or rivers. Rarely, it is also found in pipes connected to tap water.

According to the CDC website, “Sniffing Naegleria-contaminated water can transfer amoebas to the brain.” It destroys tissue and usually leads to death.”

Symptoms usually occur between 1 and 12 days after infection and may include headache, fever, nausea and vomiting. These symptoms can progress to stiff neck, confusion, seizures, and other neurological symptoms.

Infections by brain-eating amoebas are almost always fatal, with 153 of 157 patients dying since the early 1960s. Most cases were found in the southern US states, particularly Texas (39) and Florida (38).

Naegleria Fowleri is a heat-loving amoeba that is usually found in warm freshwater environments, but has recently been found in the northern states of the United States, where cooler regions are warmer and drier. Florida resident dies from brain-eating amoeba, uses tap water to clean sinuses

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