A two-year-old boy in Nevada, United States, died on July 19 from the infection of Naegleria fowleri, commonly referred to as the “brain-eating amoeba”. Woodrow Bundy’s family believes that the infection “infiltrated his body while playing in the water in Ash Springs”, as per a report in New York Post.
The boy’s mother took to Facebook to share the heartbreaking news. “Woodrow Turner Bundy returned victoriously to our father in heaven at 2:56 am. He fought 7 days. The longest any person has survived on record is 3. I knew I had the strongest son in the world,” Ms Briana said.
She added, “He is my hero and I will forever be grateful to God for giving me the goodest baby boy on earth, and I am grateful to know I will have that boy in heaven someday.”
The boy’s parents initially became aware that something was wrong when their son started exhibiting “flu-like symptoms” last week, according to a social media post by friends of the Bundy family. Ms Briana took him to the hospital right away, where the medical staff originally believed he had meningitis. Later, they discovered he had the deadly brain-eating amoeba that caused widespread concern earlier this year. It also claimed the life of a man in his 50s in the US in February 2023.
Two days before the incident, Ms Briana claimed in a Facebook post that the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had declined to provide any treatment to the two-year-old because he was “past the point of any survivor”. The health agency hasn’t responded to her allegations.
Accordion to the CDC, Naegleria fowleri is a type of amoeba (single-celled living organism) that is found in warm freshwater environments like lakes, rivers and hot springs. It can infect the brain when amoeba-containing water passes up the nose and therefore it is also known as the brain-eating amoeba. It is a rare disease, however, it is almost always fatal.
Infection occurs when water containing Naegleria fowleri enters the nose and the amoeba migrates to the brain through the olfactory nerve. It is to be noted that people are not infected by drinking contaminated water if it doesn’t go up the nose.
The symptoms of the disease appear one to 12 days after the exposure to Naegleria-containing water. As per the CDC, people die one to 18 days after symptoms appear. Severe frontal headache, fever, nausea, vomiting, stiff neck, seizures, hallucinations and coma are some of the symptoms caused by the amoeba.