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Zombie Attack: 'Brain-Eating' Amoeba Kills 29-Year-Old US Surfer

© Flickr / Jasper NanceAmoeba
Amoeba - Sputnik International
The infection, triggered by Naegleria fowleri amoeba, has only been diagnosed 143 times in the US during the past 55 years and has a 98 percent fatality rate.

A New Jersey surfer died after being infected with a “brain-eating amoeba,” a rare infection that is contracted through the nose in fresh water, The New York Times wrote.

Fabrizio Stabile, 29, felt unwell while mowing his lawn on September 16. When his symptoms worsened and he became unable to speak coherently, he was taken to hospital.

In this aerial photo taken from above New Orleans, ships on the MIssissippi River and refineries in St. Bernard Parish, La. - Sputnik International
Chlorine Burn Begins in Louisiana to Eliminate 'Brain-Eating Amoeba'
A spinal tap revealed he was infected with Naegleria fowleri, a deadly amoeba that attacks the brain. Five days later, Stabile was dead.

Fabrizio Stabile showed symptoms of the infection after he visited the landlocked BSR Cable Park’s Surf Resort in Waco, Texas where it is believed he contracted the deadly infection.

The facility is now closed as health officials carry out testing.

It is the first confirmed case of the infection in the US since 2016, epidemiologists said.

Symptoms including headache, nausea, fever and dizziness generally start about five days after infection, with death occurring about five days later, according to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Even though Naegleria fowleri infections are not common, it has a fatality rate of 98 percent. Survivors are extremely rare, with only four out of 143 known infected individuals in the US in the past 55 years having survived.

The amoeba is found in warm freshwater such as lakes, rivers and hot springs. Once it travels through the nose, it causes a devastating brain infection called primary amebic meningoencephalitis (PAM).

READ MORE: Deadly Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water Supply Sparks Panic — Reports

The CDC says that it isn’t possible to contract Naegleria fowleri by drinking contaminated water.

However, such as in the case of Stabile, Naegleria fowleri can be contracted when contaminated water enters the body through the nose, either in chlorinated swimming pool water or if one uses contaminated tap water to rinse one’s sinuses.

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