Teen-age boy dies from rare disease after swimming in Lake Texoma

Thursday, August 3rd 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(Oklahoma City-AP) -- Officials say a 13-year-old boy died from an extremely rare brain tissue disease he contracted after swimming
in Lake Texoma.

Doctor Kristy Bradley is an epidemiologist
with the state Health Department.

Bradley says the boy died of mengial encephalitis. She says the disease is caused by single-celled organisms called amoebae.

Bradley says amoebae are found in nearly all natural bodies of water. Exposure to disease-causing amoebae is common, but the risk
of infection is low.

Bradley says that the disease is very rare and that there's no need for people to avoid swimming in lakes or natural bodies of

She says to avoid areas of stagnant water and swimming in lakes with cooler temperatures.

Noseplugs will help protect children from possibly contracting the disease.

The state Health Department says since the disease was recognized 25 years ago, less than 100 cases have been recorded in
the U-S.