LOS ANGELES, Aug. 16 A 7-year-old boy in California died earlier this month from primary amoeba meningitis, a rare condition caused by an invasive infection commonly known as “brain-eating amoeba,” U.S. media reported Thursday.
The Los Angeles Times reported that the victim, named as David Pruitt, who lives in Tihema County in northern California, fell ill after swimming in a live water lake last month and was hospitalized On July 30 and died on August 7.
The “brain-eating amoeba” is known as the Fuchs Negri amoeba. The Tihama County Department of Public Health says the “brain-eating amoeba” often lives in warm fresh water, such as ponds, lakes, rivers, hot springs, etc., and can be inhaled through a person’s nose, which in some cases damages brain tissue when transferred to the brain. Symptoms such as headache, fever, nausea and vomiting occur within 1 to 9 days of the infection, and the initial symptoms cause death within 7 to 14 days.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the disease is so rare and rapid after transmission that it is difficult to diagnose it in a timely manner, with a mortality rate of up to 95 percent, but no human-to-human transmission. There is no technical means to measure whether water contains this deadly organism.