KARACHI: Third case of Naegleria fowleri, also known as brain-eating amoeba, was reported in a private hospital of Karachi on Friday while two other persons have already died of the deadly disease in the city so far.

A 34-year old man, Shoaib Ahmed Siddiqui, is under treatment in a private hospital of Karachi and his condition is termed critical. The patient is a resident of Liaquatabad. He was shifted to the private hospital in critical condition where he was shifted to ventilator.

Experts say Naegleria fowleri infects people when water containing the amoeba enters the body through nose. This typically occurs when people go swimming or diving in warm freshwater places like lakes and rivers. The Naegleria fowleri amoeba then travels up the nose to the brain where it destroys the brain tissues.

Earlier, a 21-year-old student Anas, son of Aslam, resident of Orangi Town, died due to Naegleria at Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC). The second case was reported from Kharadar area of Karachi where a 44-year-old man Rasheed Shah died.

The Sindh health department had also constituted a focal group led by Dr Syed Zafar Mehdi to formulate strategy for control of Naegleria fowleri.

The group is assigned to take samples of water from various localities of the city, including swimming pools, water reservoirs, pumping stations, farmhouses, taps etc, and test them to prevent people from falling prey to Naegleria fowleri.

Published in Dawn, May 18th, 2019