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Brain-Eating Amoeba Causes Scare Among Neti Pot Users

Officials in Louisiana warned this week that a brain-eating parasite known as Naegleria fowleri might survive in some of the state’s tap water.

Although Naegleria fowleri is most commonly found in pond water, lakes and rivers, officials said that two people in Louisiana recently fell victim to to the amoeba, seemingly after they used tap water in their neti pots.

A neti pot, which resembles a small teapot, is still recommended by doctors for patients who suffer from sinus congestion.

Dr. Satish Govindaraj, assistant professor of otolaryngology at Mount Sinai Hospital, said it’s not the the neti pot itself that is harmful, but the liquid that people use to irrigate sinuses which can cause harm.

Dr. Govindara says thaty people should make sure they wash the pot regularly with hot water and a little antibacterial soap, avoid using tap water and get a new neti pot every few months.

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