Residents of Lake Jackson, Texas, have been warned not […]
Residents of Lake Jackson, Texas, have been warned not to use tap water after deadly human eating microbes were found in the city's public water system.
Tests have confirmed the presence of a micro amoeba, Naegleria fowleri, in the water supply system of these areas. The amoeba can cause brain infections, often fatal.
Such brain phagocytic microbial infections are rare in the United States, with only 34 cases reported between 2009 and 2018. Earlier this month, a six-year-old boy became infected with the microbe and died, causing concern.
Lake Jackson officials say they are disinfecting the water supply, but don't know how long it will take.
Initially, on Friday night, eight communities in Texas were told not to use water for any reason other than flushing toilets. The warning was lifted on Saturday in all areas except Lake Jackson, which has more than 27000 residents.
Jackson Lake authorities later said people could start using the water, but it had to be boiled before drinking. Residents were also told to take other measures, including keeping water out of their noses when taking a shower or shower.
The city warns that children, the elderly and people with weakened immunity are "particularly vulnerable".
Officials say they are flushing the water system and will then conduct tests to make sure the water is safe to use.
Naegleria fowleri exists naturally in fresh water and has been found all over the world. When contaminated water enters the body through the nose and then into the brain, it usually infects people.
The infection is usually fatal and usually occurs when people swim or dive in warm freshwater places, such as lakes and rivers. In rare cases, Nigel infection can also occur when contaminated water from other sources, such as inadequately chlorinated pool water or heated and contaminated tap water, enters the nose.
Microbial contamination of treated public water systems in the United States is rare, but not unheard of. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the first deaths of poultry found in tap water from processed public drinking water systems in the United States occurred in southern Louisiana in 2011 and 2013.
The symptoms of those infected with neigella include fever, nausea and vomiting, as well as stiff necks and headaches. Most people die within a week.
The infection was confirmed in Florida earlier this year. According to the Florida Department of health, there have been 143 known cases of amoeba infection in the United States, and only four survived - with a mortality rate of 97%!
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