Prior to 2010, the northernmost case of amoebic meningitis in the U.S. was in Missouri. It is now as far north as Minnesota, as well as in states like Indiana and Kansas. In that 2017 review, the authors note that “with climate data showing consistently warming temperatures, the reports of PAM [or amoebic meningitis] cases outside of the southern-tier states is cause for concern,” continuing on to say that physicians in more northern areas should now be wary of N. fowleri. Climate change is going to warm up more of the world, and that means more people will live in places with waters friendly to N. fowleri—people who may not be aware of the dangers. Amoebic meningitis may be rare, but that doesn’t mean it can’t become more common. And knowing the signs could save your life.
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