Naegleria claims third life in Karachi this year

Brain-eating amoeba, Naegleria Fowleri, has claimed a third life in Karachi this year. It is the second death reported this month.

Forty-year-old Faizan Rasool Ghauri, a resident of Abul Hassan Isphahani Road, died on June 28, Shakeel Ahmed, a member of Sindh government’s Naegleria Monitoring and Inspection Team, told SAMAA Digital.

“On June 24, the patient complained of fever, headache and neck pain, and took medicines, but the fever persisted,” Ahmed said, adding that he was taken to a local health centre in Gulshan-e-Iqbal the next day.

As his condition worsened, his family took him to the Dow University of Health Sciences, Ojha Campus where doctors advise hospitalisation and referred him to a private healthcare centre in Gulshan-e-Iqbal due to the shortage of ICU beds.

Related: Naegleria deaths: 70% of Karachi water supply not chlorinated

On June 26, laboratory investigations of the patient were carried out, including CT scan, chest x-ray, and CSF, and the samples were sent to Aga Khan University Hospital for results,” Ahmed said, adding that the reports confirmed that the patient was suffering from primary amoebic meningoencephalitis, an infection caused by Naegleria fowleri. He was then put on the ventilator.

“Based on findings and observations, it has been concluded that the patient was infected while performing ablution (wuzu) at his house,” Ahmed said.

“The deceased was a religious man and he used to offer prayers five times a day,” the victim’s brother-in-law Hasban Khan shared.  

He went to their area’s mosque to offer prayers but performed ablution at home.

Khan said that Ghauri used to run a small business but he had been sitting at home after the provincial government tightened restrictions on the opening of markets because of the increase in coronavirus cases.

Naegleria deaths in Karachi

  • Naegleria fowleri can cause a rare and devastating infection of the brain
  • It is commonly found in warm freshwater (lakes, rivers) and soil
  • Naegleria fowleri usually infects when contaminated water enters through the nose
  • Naegleria infections may rarely occur from inadequately chlorinated swimming pool water or heated and contaminated tap water)
  • You cannot get infected from swallowing water contaminated with Naegleria (Source: CDC)

The second death caused by the brain-eating amoeba was reported on June 2. The victim identified as 30-year-old Mirza Muhammad Ali Jarral worked as an inventory manager at a private shipping firm. 

Ahmed had earlier called this the second death and declined to reveal the name of the first victim. According to him, the amoeba had claimed five lives last year.

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from News – SAMAA

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