13-year-old dies of rare ‘brain-eating’ amoeba after swimming in Florida lake

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The case marks the second death from the devastating infection in Florida this summer.

A teen has died from a rare “brain-eating” amoeba infection after a family vacation in Florida, according to news reports.

The 13-year-old, Tanner Wall, and his family had recently stayed at a campground in North Florida, which has a water park and lake where the boy went swimming, according to local news outlet News4Jax. Several days after swimming in the lake, Tanner developed symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, headaches and a stiff neck, News4Jax reported.

Tanner was initially diagnosed with strep throat, but his parents suspected Tanner could have a more serious condition, and so they drove him to UF Health in Gainesville, Florida, for a second opinion.

There, the teen was placed on a ventilator, and doctors made a devastating discovery. 

“They said, ‘We’re sorry to tell you this, but your son … has a parasitic amoeba, and there is no cure,'” Tanner’s father, Travis Wall, told News4Jax. Tanner died from an infection with Naegleria fowleri on Aug. 2, News4Jax reported.

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Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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