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Neti Pot linked to "brain eating amoeba"
[parts of this thread were copied from the old forum]

Edit: Info about Neti Pots HERE.

PaulaO Wrote:http://www.torontosun.com/2011/12/17/nas...ing-amoeba

Quote:A device for flushing out stuffed sinuses has been been linked to a deadly brain-eating amoeba.

The Louisiana Department of Health put out a warning last week about neti pots after two people in the state died from what is believed to be their improper use of the device.

The pots look like mini genie lamps and are used to irrigate the sinuses to relieve congestion from a cold or allergies.

A 51-year-old woman and a 20-year-old man became infected with Naegleria fowleri - the so-called brain-eating amoeba - after using a neti pot filled with tap water instead of the recommended sterilized water, officials said in a news release.

"If you are irrigating, flushing or rinsing your sinuses, for example, by using a neti pot, use distilled, sterile or previously boiled water to make up the irrigation solution," said Louisiana State epidemiologist Dr. Raoult Ratard.

"Tap water is safe for drinking, but not for irrigating your nose."

I've always used tap water but I use the bottle, not a neti pot. Not sure if there's a difference between the two other than how it is used.
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zonk Wrote:
Quote:"Tap water is safe for drinking, but not for irrigating your nose."
If the water is good for drinking than it is good to flush your nose. Nobody died in swimming/diving with their nose under water in pools or in the ocean. If the water is from a contaminated source than it is not good for drinking or flushing your nose.
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Misguided Wrote:Zonk, there are things which don't pose a threat when ingested, because they are killed in your stomach, that might pose a threat introduced directly into your sinus cavities. I think it is best if we don't try to give medical advice.
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zonk Wrote:It is not meant to be a medical advice and i,m not sure how you come up with this assumption , just my opinion .
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bobg1946 Wrote:You guys had me worried for a second. My ENT required me to flush my nasal passages four times a day with the NeilMed Sinus Rinse (same manufacturer of the Netipot). He gave me the entire kit and strenuously stated to only use distilled water. This was something of a surprise, as the last time he removed the polyps he required me to use table salt and tap water to perform the rinses! Kind of shows you the advancements in medical science over the course of 15 years. Blowing-nose
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zonk Wrote:Here is quote from the same article :

Naegleria fowleri infections are very rare. In the 10 years from 2001 to 2010, 32 infections were reported in the U.S. Of those cases, 30 people were infected by contaminated recreational water and two people were infected by water from a geothermal drinking water supply.

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Cutter Wrote:I am not certain but I'm fairly certain that the water coming out of my tap is better and meets more stringent testing and standards than anything you can buy in bottles at the grocery store or pharmacy. That's assuming your tap water comes from a municipal water supply in the US. Anything else and you're on your own.
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PaulaO Wrote:Further articles on it:
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Sleepster Wrote:
Cutter,(time=1324173989) Wrote:I am not certain but I'm fairly certain that the water coming out of my tap is better and meets more stringent testing and standards than anything you can buy in bottles at the grocery store or pharmacy.
Most of the bottled water on the shelves of those stores comes from the local municipal water supply. It's then further processed to remove stuff like minerals, sediments, chlorine, and bacteria. I agree, though, that all of that additional processing is probably not necessary for sinus irrigation. I did notice, though, that after I added a water softener it did make the sinus irrigations seem less harsh. Adding baking soda helps with that, too.

Maybe patients are more likely to comply if the water is softened. That might be the reason doctors would tell patients to use distilled water.
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archangle Wrote:Naegleria infections mostly seem to happen when you get contaminated water into your nose. It's known to happen when you go swimming, water skiiing, etc., especially in warm lakes, ponds, or streams. It's entry path to the brain is up the nerves from your nose to your brain.

From what I've read, most or all of the cases of Naegleria involve getting water up the nose from water sports or nasal irrigation. Supposedly, no one got it from drinking water.

At least one person got it from neti in a home with a municipal water supply. The claim was that Naegleria was growing in the pipes in his home, but wasn't in the water supply. I wonder if the municipal water didn't have Naegleria in it at one time, but it had cleared out by the time the water was tested.

The idea that it can grow in the pipes in your house once it gets there is scary.

Naegleria is not a bacteria or virus. It's something like an amoeba. It's not the typical organism that water treatment plants are familiar with and monitoring and working to kill. I wouldn't be surprised if it occasionally slips through the process.

I find it puzzling if you can't catch Naegleria from drinking water or from taking a shower, but the public health people seem to think you don't. It would seem that if you drink Naegleria, your would get it in your throat and occasionally cough or sneeze it back up to your nose. Most of us have occasionally choked on drinking water and got it up our nose. When taking a shower, you inhale tiny water droplets. Maybe neti puts so much more water up your nose than these other things that the odds are higher. Or maybe the mucous in your nose protects you unless you wash it away with neti or other large amounts of water.

Don't put too much faith in your municipal water. It's not sterile coming out of the water plant. They monitor for known dangerous bacteria and other organisms, but they don't usually treat it enough to kill every single germ. They monitor the organisms in the water, and adjust the chlorine and other treatment levels up and down to bring the water to a safe level. That's why some cities have water that tastes good and some is like drinking bleach. The nastier the source water, the more chlorine.

I hope that water systems managers are being more careful to screen for Naegleria in the future, but I wouldn't put a lot of faith in it unless there's a lot more cases.

Then the water goes through miles and miles of pipe. Every time the water gets shut off in part of the system, there's a risk of contaminants getting into the pipe. If you've ever seen them flush out a water system during testing, you'll realize there's a lot of gunk in the pipes. They claim Naegleria can live in household pipes, it can probably live in water system pipes.

Distilled water is inherently safer than municipal water. The process of turning liquid water into steam and then condensing it back will get rid of almost any germs. Once you produce pure H2O, there are no nutrients to speak of in the distilled water for germs to feed on. If distilled water gets contaminants in it, the bugs may be able to live, but they generally can't reproduce. Tap water does have some nutrients in it that germs can feed off of.

Many people think the chlorine in their municipal tap water will continue to kill germs as it comes out of your tap. Not necessarily. Sometimes chlorine is added at the start of the process and gets filtered out in later stages of the water processing. It also evaporates out of the water after it leaves the plant.

I suspect bottled water is safer than most municipal water. The bottled water has to be clean enough to be drinkable after sitting in the bottle for months. If I put my tap water in a sealed bottle and leave it for a few months, green stuff grows in it.
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