Amoeba parasite causes second death in the US

August 17th, 2011 - 10:49 pm ICT by Aishwarya Bhatt  

Washington, Aug 17 (THAINDIAN NEWS) Fear seems to have gripped a section of the US public after the second death linked to a rare creature was confirmed in the country. Autopsy carried out on 9-year-old Virginia boy Christian Alexander Strickland confirmed that he had an inflammation of the brain. The death has been blamed on “brain-eating amoeba” which is water-borne.

The mother of Christian confirmed that her son had been to several locations on a fishing day camp. 16-year-old Courtney Nash was the first American to be killed by the creature when she died on Saturday. Officials say she swam in the St. John’s River in Florida and it is suspected that she got the creature from that place.

Virginia Department of Health’s state epidemiologist, Dr. Keri Hall, warned parents to keep an eye on their children especially the water that they swim in. Amoeba infection is very rare in the United States.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said only 32 cases of amoeba infection was recorded in the United States between 2001 and 2010. The center has assured the public not to panic.

The official name of the creature is Naegleria fowleri and health officials say the infection of the creature commonly occurs during the summer.

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