Iowa beach closed after brain-eating amoeba confirmed in Missouri

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A rare brain infection led Iowa officials to close a beach in Taylor County.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources said the temporary closure is a precautionary response to a confirmed Naegleria fowleri infection in a Missouri resident who was recently exposed while swimming on the beach at Lake Des State Park. Three fires.

Tests to confirm the presence of the “brain-eating amoeba” are being conducted in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and could take several days.

The department wrote that it was working closely with the Iowa Department of Health and Human Services and would share updates as test results become available.

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No other suspected cases are under investigation in Iowa.

Lake of Three Fires State Park in Taylor County, Iowa
(Iowa Department of Natural Resources)

In its own statement, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services wrote that the Missouri patient is currently being treated for primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAM) in a hospital intensive care unit.

He said the patient’s source of exposure is being investigated and local and out-of-state activities are being considered.

The only other case identified among a Missouri resident occurred in 1987 and no other suspected cases of MPA are being investigated there.

“These situations are extremely rare in the United States and in Missouri in particular, but it’s important for people to know that infection is a possibility so they can seek timely medical attention if associated symptoms present themselves.” , said Dr. George Turabelidze, of Missouri. state epidemiologist, said in a statement.

Naegleria fowleri (commonly called the "brain eating amoeba" Where "brain eating amoeba"), is a free-living microscopic amoeba*, (single-celled living organism).  It can cause a rare** and devastating brain infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAD).

Naegleria fowleri (commonly known as “brain-eating amoeba” or “brain-eating amoeba”) is a free-living microscopic amoeba* (single-celled living organism). It can cause a rare** and devastating brain infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis (PAD).
(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC))

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The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services said on Facebook Friday that public health experts strongly believe the lake is a likely source and that other public water sources in Missouri are being investigated. test.

Missourians are warned to exercise caution when swimming and diving in warm fresh waters and assume the presence of Naegleria fowleria under these conditions.

Since 1962, only 154 known cases have been identified in the United States

PAM is not contagious, but can be life threatening.

Lake of the Three Fires State Park in southwestern Iowa

Lake of the Three Fires State Park in southwestern Iowa
(Iowa Department of Natural Resources)

Naegleria fowleri, the microscopic free-living single-celled organism that causes PAM, is commonly found in lakes, rivers, hot springs, and soil.

It usually infects people when contaminated water enters the nose and the amoeba travels to the brain.

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In very rare cases, infections can also occur when contaminated water from other sources enters the nose, but a person cannot become infected by swallowing contaminated water.

Symptoms of infection include severe headache, fever, nausea, vomiting, stiff neck, seizures, mental alertness and hallucinations.

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