House Calls

SUM 2017

House Calls Magazine is a quarterly publication that focuses on health and wellness. It includes a wide assortment of articles with topics on the latest health and wellness information, nutrition, safety, lifestyles, and more.

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h o u s e c a l l s { summer 2017 } 13 Freshwater Amoeba Facts L ast summer, an 11-year-old girl tragically died after contracting Naegleria fowleri—a freshwater amoeba that causes a brain infection often leading to death—while swimming in the Edisto River within Charleston County. The parasites exist in freshwater lakes, rivers, and ponds and can reach the brain through the nasal canal. Roper St. Francis affiliated family medicine doctor D. Todd Detar, DO, stresses that deadly encounters rarely occur: "Nationally, there were only 33 freshwater amoeba cases between 2006 and 2016." However, because the parasite thrives in warm water, like that in late summer, experts recommend wearing nose plugs or holding your nose when jumping into and swimming in warm fresh water, or to keep your head above water. If symptoms surface after swimming in a pond, river, or lake, (they include severe headache, nausea, vomiting, and sensitivity to light), seek medical care immediately. A rundown on the potentially fatal microorganisms that live in local waters

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