Brain-Eating Amoeba Kills Second Neti Pot User -MedPage Today

via Medical News: Brain-Eating Amoeba Kills Second Neti Pot User – in Infectious Disease, Infection Control from MedPage Today.

Wow!  Louisiana State officials are announcing they have linked a second death from amoebic meningitis to the use of the Neti Pot.  This is a terrible 100% fatal form of meningitis that happens when a particular amoeba, Naegleria, gets forcibly sprayed through the roof of the nose and sinuses directly into the brain.  Classically it happens in warm freshwater in the summer months with children playing and jumping into the water.   Apparently Louisiana tap water supply is also at risk given the deceased patients who used the Neti Pots filled them with tap water (not pond water).  A Neti Pot is a device used to rinse the nasal passages and sinuses with a 6-8oz dose of salt water for the purpose of reducing nasal allergy and sinus symptoms.

I recommend using sterile saline, boiled water, or at least distilled water in whichever nasal irrigation device you choose.  I also generally recommend against a Neti Pot or rinse bottle.  Instead, a low-volume atomized or nebulized system is simply more effective and easier to use than a high-volume flush, and is what we strongly recommend for our allergy and post-operative patients.