THERE is an urgent need to create awareness among the people about the brain-eating amoeba which gains entry in the body through the nose.

It is a single-cell living substance found in fresh water, soil and sewage. This amoeba was discovered by an Australian bacteriologist in the 20th century.

Some strains of this amoeba are very pathogenic and may cause a fatal primary amoebic meningitis and encephalitis of brain.

This amoeba grows well at a temperature higher than 47 degrees Centigrade and can survive for short periods at higher temperatures.

It can be found in warm fresh water such as lakes and rivers, hot springs, and water heaters.

Its occurrence is prolonged during the summer season.

This pandemic disease can be prevented by avoiding swimming in fresh warm water which is not chlorinated.

Likewise, boiled or chlorinated water should be used for nasal cleaning. Water storage tanks need to be cleaned or preferably chlorinated twice in a year.

DR QAMBER ABBAS Rawalpindi

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