Health & Lifestyle

Florida residents warned about faucet water after man dies from brain-eating amoeba

Nearly 1 / 4 million Floridians are being warned to keep away from washing their face with faucet water after a person died from a brain-eating amoeba in February.

The recommendation, which applies to the almost 200,000 residents of Charlotte County, comes after a county resident died on February 20.

Officials consider the nameless man caught the brain-eating an infection from washing his face and rinsing his sinuses with contaminated faucet water.

Infections from Naegleria fowleri, a microscopic single-celled amoeba, are very uncommon. The an infection is called main amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) and happens when contaminated water enters the nostril.


Naegleria fowleri (commonly referred to as the "brain-eating amoeba" or "brain-eating ameba"), is a free-living microscopic ameba*, (single-celled living organism). It can cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).

Naegleria fowleri (generally known as the “brain-eating amoeba” or “brain-eating ameba”), is a free-living microscopic ameba*, (single-celled dwelling organism). It may cause a uncommon and devastating an infection of the mind referred to as main amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM). (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC))

The illness has no identified efficient remedies, killing roughly 97% of those that contract it. Only 4 sufferers have survived the an infection within the U.S. from 1962 to 2021.

The CDC informed FOX 4 Fort Myers that that is the primary case the place an individual in Florida was contaminated by faucet water. It can also be the primary case within the U.S. to occur throughout a winter month.

Dr. Mobeen Rathore, a illness professional on the University of Florida, suggested that each one Charlotte County residents keep away from exposing their nostril to faucet water throughout this time. 


Under a magnification of 125X, this photomicrograph of a brain tissue specimen depicts the cytoarchitectural changes associated with a free-living, Naegleria fowleri, amebic infection.

Under a magnification of 125X, this photomicrograph of a mind tissue specimen depicts the cytoarchitectural modifications related to a free-living, Naegleria fowleri, amebic an infection. (Photo by Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images)

“Unless it is cleared [by authorities] it is best to keep away from any water going into the nostril, at the least for now,” Dr. Rathore informed The Daily Mail. “In the bathe, keep away from getting something into the nostril.”

If it’s unavoidable, residents are instructed to boil the water first. Officials careworn that the an infection can’t happen by consuming faucet water.

“Infection with Naegleria fowleri is  EXTREMELY RARE and might solely occur when water contaminated with amoebae enters the physique by the nostril,” The Florida Department of Health tweeted on Friday. “You CANNOT be contaminated by consuming faucet water.”

Residents are advised to boil water before washing their face to avoid any amoebae from entering their nasal passages, doctors say.

Residents are suggested to boil water earlier than washing their face to keep away from any amoebae from getting into their nasal passages, docs say. (Getty Images)

Fox News Digital’s Elizabeth Pritchett contributed to this report.

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