Texas girl fights for her life after contracting brain-eating amoeba

Avant contracted a rare brain-eating amoeba while swimming in a river and is hospitalized in Texas

Avant contracted a rare brain-eating amoeba while swimming in a river and is hospitalized in Texas

CBS News affiliate KWTX reoprts that 10-year-old Lily Mae Avant died early Monday after being hospitalized at Cook Children's Hospital in Fort Worth over the past week. Soon after, she came down with what seemed like a common viral infection, a headache and fever.

"She's a fighter", Lily's stepfather, John Crawson (who the family refers to as Lily's father), told WFAA in an interview Friday night. We're going to attack it as quickly as it's been attacking Lily's little brain.

"She was incoherent, unresponsive and was quickly swept up and taken to the ER", the family wrote on Lily's Facebook page.

She was rushed to the emergency room then airlifted to Cook dinner's Youngsters's Hospital, the place a spinal faucet revealed that she had contracted the lethal an infection, in accordance with KWTX-TV. She was treated with antimicrobial medication, the family said. Once the amoeba enters the nose, it travels to the brain where it causes PAM, which is usually fatal.

Only four people in the United States out of 143 have survived infection from 1962 to 2017, according to the CDC. The amoeba is very common in natural, unchlorinated bodied across the US, but it is extremely rare. "For this to happen to her when there were so many other people in the same waters on the same days we just don't understand why it was her".

In most years in Texas, "we have zero or one case", Van Desuen said, adding that Lily's was the first case of the year in the state. The day she was in there, we had 40 people in there with her. This disease of the central nervous system is nearly always fatal.

Chris Van Deusen, a spokesman for the Texas Department of State Health Services, confirmed to ABC News that there was a case of primary amebic meningoencephalitis caused by Naegleria fowleri in a resident of Bosque County, but couldn't provide further details on the patient due to privacy reasons. While infection is rare, people should be aware of the low-level risk while swimming in fresh water lakes, rivers, and hot springs.

Hold your nose shut, use nose clips, or keep your head above water when taking part in water-related activities in bodies of warm freshwater.