NewsDesk @bactiman63

Health officials in Lahore, Pakistan have reported the first Naegleria fowleri in the metropolis in 2023.

Image/Robert Herriman

The 30 year old patient was admitted to Services Hospital and is being treated, according to SAMAA report.

Services Hospital MS Dr Ehtisham Haque said that the patient had various symptoms including headache, fever for the last four days.

This is the fourth case of the lethal parasitic meningitis reported in Pakistan this year–the other three reported in Karachi.

Primary Amebic Meningoencephalitis, or PAM, the disease caused by Naegleria fowleri, the amoeba that is found in almost all untreated, fresh surface water and in soil. The amoeba thrives in freshwater that is warmer than 80 degrees and stagnant or slow-moving.

PAM only infects people when water containing the amoeba enters through the nose, usually from diving or jumping into freshwater. The infection cannot be spread from person to person or by drinking contaminated water. The amoeba travels up the nose and makes its way into the brain along the olfactory nerve, destroying brain tissue.

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Those infected with PAM will usually start showing symptoms about 5 days after the infection. It can often be mistaken for the flu or bacterial meningitis, as early symptoms include headache, fever, nausea or vomiting and can then progress to loss of balance, a stiff neck, seizures and hallucinations. The disease progresses quickly once the symptoms start and usually causes death within two weeks of the initial infection.

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