Naegleria fowler is a deadly brain amoeba – and not the kind of things you want to get in touch with. Two recent incidents have exposed people in the terrible microbe, one leading to the death of a 29-year-old man in New Jersey.
The stir started last month when Fabrizio Stabile of New Jersey visited a Texas wave pool and tragically swallowed deadly amebia. He later died of the infection on September 16, according to a GoFundMe website designed to help establish a foundation in his honor and raise awareness of rare but preventable infection.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are testing the resort where Stabile swallowed the amebas and the water park was voluntarily closed until the CDC investigation ended, according to Waco Tribune-Herald.
Ten days later, Naegleria fowler was also discovered in a water system in Louisiana near Shreveport on September 26, according to KTBS. Amoeba was discovered thanks to an occasional test of system health and safety.
According to CDC, Naegleria fowleri causes the onset of primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM), a brain infection that leads to the destruction of brain tissue and is fatal. Her symptoms imitate those of bacterial meningitis and include fever, headache and nausea. After the onset of symptoms, patients usually die from PAM within five days.
The CDC says it is not possible to contract Naegleria fowleri drinking contaminated water. However, as in the case of Stabil, Naegleria fowleri can be contracted when contaminated water enters the body through the nose, or into a pool of chlorine, or if water is contaminated with water to rinse their sinuses.
Naegleria fowleri infections are not so common, but with a lethal rate of over 97%, survivors of Naegleria fowleri are extremely rare. Four of the 143 infected individuals known to the US in the last 55 years have survived.