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 Post subject: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 9:23 am 
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Woman dies from rare, brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot with tap water

https://kdvr.com/2018/12/07/woman-dies- ... tap-water/


I know it is rare but GEEZ LOUISE

I use a sinus irrigator mostly in winter time with this
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"It’s extremely important to use sterile saline or sterile water," Dr. Cobbs said. "I think she was using (tap) water that had been through a water filter and had been doing that for about a year previously."

WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?!

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 9:38 am 
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Holy Crap! My wife had sinus issues many years back, had two different reaming-out surgeries, and at her doctor's direction started to use a sinus irrigation system that involved a special attachment to a Waterpik. I believe she just used tap water in it, but I might be wrong. She stopped using it after a year or two.

Wily, I assume you're dissolving that powder in tap water? If so, you might want to re-think that! I am not sure just what is meant here by "sterile water" … I assume distilled water you buy in a jug would not qualify. I am guessing that boiled water also would not qualify, but I'm out of my depth here. But I echo your reaction … geez Louise!

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 9:50 am 
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sterile and distilled are not the same. I think we are OK here because our water comes from wells in the ground and not from municipality that gets its water from lakes and streams.

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 10:38 am 
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Hm, good point … we were on a well when my wife was irrigating her sinus, and are obviously on a well now. The article says the amoeba lives in warm soil and water, but our water sources are anything but warm. Whew. Still, a darn good thing to be aware of.

And as I read the article, I had a question. How come the amoeba is dangerous if it enters via sinus irrigation, but not if it enters via drinking? Is there a path to the brain if it is inhaled, but not if it is ingested? Both paths involve common tracts in the throat.

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 11:13 am 
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Keg, when used to flush the sinuses, the amoeba (if any) can find a warm place to live, multiply, and migrate to the brain in the sinuses which are right by the brain. When swallowed, the they go through the digestive tract and come in contact with the gastric acids in the stomach which can destroy them. The sinuses do not have this type of protection.


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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 11:28 am 
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Whoa, what a scary scenario! We too use a sinus irrigation with well water. And yes, our well water is very, very cold. But still, every time I irrigate my sinus, I will think of this... :yikes:

In 2004 (I think this time), when my husband was in the UCH intensive care facility, there was a man down the hall with flesh eating bacteria in his shoulder. All the nurses and doctors would on protective covering when ever they went into his room. But still, I was kinda nervous about the bacteria and being so close. I think the poor man has his arm and shoulder removed to save his life. Some of the organisms that attach us humans are downright scary!


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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 12:29 pm 
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smtaw wrote:
Keg, when used to flush the sinuses, the amoeba (if any) can find a warm place to live, multiply, and migrate to the brain in the sinuses which are right by the brain. When swallowed, the they go through the digestive tract and come in contact with the gastric acids in the stomach which can destroy them. The sinuses do not have this type of protection.

Thanks, smtaw, that makes sense.

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 1:45 pm 
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There is a wide variety of sterile saline products available for flushing eyes, sinus, wounds, etc. To my mind, it's a MUCH safer option than any neti pot type system.

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Dec 7, 2018 2:49 pm 
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I swear by my neti pot on occassion. I remember watching an episode of "House" and they couldn't figure out what this patient was getting ill from. Of course he sent the troop to check out her house and they reported not finding anything but a little funny tea pot. She was using it with tap water and not distilled water. Ever since that episode, I've been using distilled water. I've read about a couple of instances about it since watching the show. Who knows...maybe House saved my life...LOLOL

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Jul 8, 2019 9:58 pm 
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I am not a fan of neti pots.

Anyone who knows me realizes that I am "crunchy" almost to the point of eccentricity. As soon as I found out of the existence of neti pots, I jumped on the bandwagon immediately. I do so wish that I had not been so quick to pick up a fad without researching the possible harm it could do.

Every time I used my neti pot, I always got an ear infection - they were usually mild and I never connected it to my neti pot until it was so consistent that I could no longer deny it. I was always very careful and used sterilized, distilled water with a little salt to make a saline solution. I always sterilized my neti pot before and after each use. I scrupulously followed the instructions. But the infections kept coming on.

I finally got an infection that was so bad that it migrated into my eyes and throat. It was a very serious infection and it took months to recover. When I was finally well again, I had lost 50% of the hearing in my right ear and I have a permanent hissing & ringing from the scar tissue that has built up in my ear. To this day, it often still feels like there is water trapped in my ear. After 10 years, I'm starting to recover some of my hearing, but during pollen season, the hissing and ringing in that ear get worse. I don't know if I'll ever be the same.

I've since found out that different people have subtle differences in their ears that make neti pot irrigation inappropriate for some people. They can sometimes work well for people with an ear structure that is able to drain completely. But for others, the water gets trapped and becomes a breeding ground for the bacteria that is already present in the eyes, ears, nose, and throat. It doesn't matter that the water you start with is pristine-clean. If you are one of those people who cannot completely drain, your own internal bacteria will colonize the water that is trapped in that dark, moist, warm, environment. Remember that the reason you are irrigating is that you are infected with a pathogen, and the very last thing you want to do is give that infection a place to breed and explode.

It wasn't that I did it wrong and it wasn't that my water was contaminated. It was that I introduced clean water into a contaminated ear structure that was unable to drain, and I ended up permanently damaging my ear.

Anyway, if a neti pot works for you, I wouldn't want to discourage anyone from doing what helps. But I do want to give you guys a heads up that this practice isn't a good idea for some folks. If you ever feel that you cannot drain after irrigating, just stop using the neti and try something else.

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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Jul 10, 2019 6:53 am 
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 Post subject: Re: Woman dies - brain-eating amoeba after using neti pot
Post Posted: Jul 10, 2019 1:23 pm 
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We always use boiled water or distilled water in our neti pot. The amoeba can live in hot water heaters, so being on a well doesn't necessarily offer protection.


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