The 69-year-old woman first developed a persistent sinus infection, which led doctors to prescribe her with a commonly-used neti pot to flush out her sinuses, according to a case report published in September’s International Journal of Infectious Diseases. Instead of using sterile water or saline, both of which are recommended when using a neti pot, the woman reportedly rinsed her nose with tap water filtered from a Brita Water Purifier, the case report said. RELATED: Montel Williams Is ‘Blessed to Be Alive’ After Life-Threatening Cerebellar Hemorrhagic Stroke From there, the woman’s condition began to deteriorate, as the team at Johns Hopkins suggested that the mass seemed to be a possible amoebic infection. After the woman had died, lab results revealed that her infection on her brain tissue and nose rash were from an amoeba called Balamuthia mandrillaris. RELATED VIDEO: Massachusetts Mom of 2 Dies Suddenly After Flu Diagnosis: She Had a ‘Huge Heart’ Senior case report author Dr. Charles Cobbs, who is a neurosurgeon at the Swedish Medical Center in Seattle, told LiveScience that he suspects the woman contracted the fatal infection from using the unsterilized water in her neti pot as the amoeba could have been in the tap water.
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