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Old 01-30-2019, 06:10 PM
Anny Middon Anny Middon is online now
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How likely is it that I'll die due to sinus rinse?

A few weeks ago there was a news story about a woman who died from using tap water in her neti pot. Basically, she was infected by a brain-eating amoeba. So the CDC now recommends using sterile water to rinse your sinuses.

I occasionally use a NeilMed sinus rinse thingie. I could use distilled water in it, but it’s much easier to just use warm tap water. Assuming I rinse my sinuses something like 20 times a year, how much risk am I incurring to by using tap water? Is it like the chance of dying from a fall on the stairs or like dying from an earthquake?

I am on city water, sourced from Lake Michigan. I would think that might matter.

Also, if I am at some level of risk from brain-eating amoebas by using treated Lake Michigan water in my sin, how much risk are people at who swim in Lake Michigan?
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:25 PM
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how much risk are people at who swim in Lake Michigan?

It happens sometimes. But I would think that a good rule of thumb is that whenever an injury/death from a common activity makes national/international news, then it is a pretty rare injury.
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:40 PM
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RTFM!

"DO NOT USE TAP WATER UNLESS STERILIZED BY BOILING

For your safety, do not use tap water, faucet water, or non-chlorinated or non-ultra (.2 micron) filtered well water for dissolving the mixture UNLESS it has been previously boiled for five minutes or more as boiling sterilizes the water. Before using the product, make sure the boiled water has been cooled down. You can store boiled water in a clean container for up to seven days in the refrigerator. Other choices are distilled, micro-filtered (through 0.2 micron), commercially bottled or, as mentioned earlier, previously boiled water cooled to lukewarm or body temperature."
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:53 PM
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I use distilled water in my CPAP machine. A gallon of distilled water is less than a dollar.

Personally, not only would I use distilled water for a neti pot, but I would also bring it to a rolling boil for 5 minutes to sterilize it (and then allow it to cool, of course).

While the risk of infection may be indeed be relatively low, it needs to be compared to the fraction of the population who use neti pots (which I'd guess is fairly low), much less 20 times per year (which I'd guess would be even lower).

As a civil engineer, I will tell you that tap water is perfectly safe to drink, but it is certainly not sterile.

Here are the recommendations from the CDC:
https://www.cdc.gov/parasites/naegle...s-rinsing.html
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Old 01-30-2019, 06:57 PM
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I use tap water in mine, but I always boil it and let it cool to just above body temperature before I use it.

My BFF has had a lot of sinus issues, and his ENT specialize told him NOT to use one, because it could push the infection farther back into his sinus cavities. However, for people who just have occasional problems, it should be OK.
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:00 PM
Anny Middon Anny Middon is online now
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Originally Posted by lingyi View Post
RTFM!

"DO NOT USE TAP WATER UNLESS STERILIZED BY BOILING

For your safety, do not use tap water, faucet water, or non-chlorinated or non-ultra (.2 micron) filtered well water for dissolving the mixture UNLESS it has been previously boiled for five minutes or more as boiling sterilizes the water. Before using the product, make sure the boiled water has been cooled down. You can store boiled water in a clean container for up to seven days in the refrigerator. Other choices are distilled, micro-filtered (through 0.2 micron), commercially bottled or, as mentioned earlier, previously boiled water cooled to lukewarm or body temperature."
Well, my question wasn't "how do I minimize my chances of dying from brain-eating amoeba in my sinus rinse?" but rather "if I decide not to go through that rigmarole, what's my statistical risk?"

I did RTFM, but it looks like you didn't RTFOP.
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:37 PM
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"if I decide not to go through that rigmarole, what's my statistical risk?"
How low would that need to be before you decided to risk it?
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:42 PM
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You can check up on how your water treatment is done. If it involves chlorine, you should be fine because the chlorination kills the amoeba (in theory.)

Plus, Lake Michigan is relatively cold water. The amoeba usually dwells in water in warmer regions, such as Texas and Florida.

On top of that, it's winter these days, which only makes the water even colder and less amoeba-hospitable.

That being said, it's still not a smart gamble to take either way.
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Old 01-30-2019, 08:08 PM
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Well, my question wasn't "how do I minimize my chances of dying from brain-eating amoeba in my sinus rinse?" but rather "if I decide not to go through that rigmarole, what's my statistical risk?"
What you appear to be asking are, "What are the odds that I will be infected by Naegleria fowleri?" The specific odds may face are unquantifiable because there isn't sufficient data on infections for the specific population of nasal rinse uses, it is unknown how well treated your tap water is or the prevalence of N. fowleri in your environment, and your personal susceptibility to infection, which is suspected to vary from person to person.

However, "risk" is never assessed just a single percentage or ratio of odds, because inherent in risk assessment is the potential severity of occurrence. There are different ways to assess and plot risk but most look something like this chart in which some product of likelihood and severity/criticality are combined to assess the degree of significance of the risk, and the to find the best way of reducing risk. In this case, regardless of the likelihood, the criticality of infection is severe because of the consequences. (Infection will result in severe brain damage and likely death, and infection by N. fowleri is resistant to medical treatment even if the infection is properly diagnosed before the onset of neurological damage). Hence, unless it was possible to quantify the probability as being so low that you could use tap water 20 times per year times your remaining expected lifespan with a likelihood per use that would not exceed whatever roll of the dice you would find acceptable to avoid the "inconvenience" of using distilled water, it doesn't make sense to accept any level of risk.

As an example, if there is a 0.01% chance of infection per use, and you use tap water in your nasal irrigator 20 times a year for the next fifty years (1000 incidences), you would have a ~1:10 chance of being infected. Given the unknowns, it makes little sense to risk infection compared to spending a few dollars per year to purchase distilled water. And as robby notes, municipal water services treat water to remove the pathogens that would cause infection from ingestion but do not sterilize it, nor would it be possible to make the entire path from treatment to water supply network to the plumbing in your house sterile.

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Old 01-30-2019, 09:32 PM
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How likely? Not very. The otolaryngology and Infectious disease experts all report that the risk is 'extremely low' and that it's a 'rare' complication. And that generally the risk is more for the elderly or immunocompromised. But the available data is just not good enough to to really give precise numbers.

I've been using a neti pot for over a decade, using well water that has not been found to contain amoebic organisms; I don't plan to change my practice based on the slight risk. But I have patients who choose to use saline or distilled water, or ultra-filtered water, to reduce their risk even further. That's not unreasonable. Just know that it won't reduce the risk to zero. But it definitely makes it safer.

We do riskier things every day, like driving a car. That's far more likely to result in injury or death than using tap water for a sinus rinse. But we choose to improve our odds when driving by wearing seat belts and taking other precautions.

Stranger's 0.01% chance per use is, in my mind, far too high. I suspect the actual lifetime risk to be well lower than 0.01%, else we'd be seeing a LOT more brain abscesses clinically than we do. The academic papers cited in Snopes' article on the topic provide enough statistical info for me to make such a WAG.
https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/br...moeba-sinuses/

Last edited by Qadgop the Mercotan; 01-30-2019 at 09:36 PM.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:16 PM
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I've been using a Neti pot daily for at least 5 years, maybe longer by now. I'm still here. Tap water from Lake Erie.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:29 PM
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As an example, if there is a 0.01% chance of infection per use, and you use tap water in your nasal irrigator 20 times a year for the next fifty years (1000 incidences), you would have a ~1:10 chance of being infected.
Not necessarily, because the trials aren't independent. A large part of the probability of getting infected is the question of whether your local water source contains the amoebas in the first place, and that's not likely to change with repeated uses.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:37 PM
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Water as it comes from a treatment plant is almost always safe for anything, but that does not mean that water that comes out of your faucet is equally safe. Water can be contaminated in the distribution system. That is why the CDC recommends boiling for 1 minute at sea level and for 3 min above 6500 feet. That is a generous amount of overkill because amoebae are not robust creatures, they are all likely to die well before the water temperature gets anywhere near boiling. And once boiled, the water will be safe for nasal irrigation forever if kept in a closed container. Amoebae are not floating around in the air in your kitchen.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Qadgop the Mercotan View Post
How likely? Not very. The otolaryngology and Infectious disease experts all report that the risk is 'extremely low' and that it's a 'rare' complication. And that generally the risk is more for the elderly or immunocompromised. But the available data is just not good enough to to really give precise numbers.

I've been using a neti pot for over a decade, using well water that has not been found to contain amoebic organisms; I don't plan to change my practice based on the slight risk. But I have patients who choose to use saline or distilled water, or ultra-filtered water, to reduce their risk even further. That's not unreasonable. Just know that it won't reduce the risk to zero. But it definitely makes it safer.
Am I to understand that your practice is no longer confined to... umm...confined patients*? If so, Good on ya!

*It strikes me as implausible that incarcerated persons tend to have the option of choosing distilled water in their neti pots. Should I be mistaken, I will happily accept correction.
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Old 01-30-2019, 11:42 PM
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I don't know about your neti practices, but mine include salt, which I assume may not be that great for brain-eating critters.
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Old 01-31-2019, 12:40 AM
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I don't know about your neti practices, but mine include salt, which I assume may not be that great for brain-eating critters.
That was my thought as well. At the very least a saline solution doesn't sting like plain water does, IME.
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Old 01-31-2019, 12:51 AM
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Basically your personal chances are nil to not quite zero, but if you do get infected you're really screwed, that's my summarization.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:08 AM
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I don't know about your neti practices, but mine include salt, which I assume may not be that great for brain-eating critters.
But the amoebas seem to cope just fine in the victims bloodstream. Which I presume is just as salty as your neti water

Last edited by lisiate; 01-31-2019 at 02:08 AM.
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Old 01-31-2019, 08:29 AM
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Am I to understand that your practice is no longer confined to... umm...confined patients*? If so, Good on ya!

*It strikes me as implausible that incarcerated persons tend to have the option of choosing distilled water in their neti pots. Should I be mistaken, I will happily accept correction.
I treat many patients in prison who are at different security levels. The folks in minimums have more options than those in maximums.

I'm completely ruined for private practice now, I tell patients exactly what I think they need to know; complete and unvarnished truth about their situation. Fortunately I don't have to face patient satisfaction surveys. Though most of my patients do seem to appreciate this direct approach.

Also, since the official recommendation is to use distilled water, distilled water can be provided on request if the patient has a legit prescription for the neti pot.

Just like we use distilled water for our patients with CPAP machines.
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Old 01-31-2019, 09:05 AM
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A few weeks ago there was a news story about a woman who died from using tap water in her neti pot.
I read the linked news story and related reports on google search. I did not find how the doctors established that the Neti was culprit as opposed to tap water/spray getting in her nose during a shower or bath. Is there any information available on this ?
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Old 01-31-2019, 10:08 AM
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Stranger's 0.01% chance per use is, in my mind, far too high. I suspect the actual lifetime risk to be well lower than 0.01%, else we'd be seeing a LOT more brain abscesses clinically than we do.
That figure wasn’t based on anything; I was just using it for illustration purposes to show that even a small percentage chance of infection can add up over a cummulation of events. Infection by N. fowleri is extremely rare even by people who are exposed to it, but injecting warm, unsterilized water into the sinus cavity is essentially maximizing the potental for infection.

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I don't know about your neti practices, but mine include salt, which I assume may not be that great for brain-eating critters.
The low concentration of salt necessary to make an isotonic saline solution (~1%) will not harm most microorganisms, and higher concentrations would irritate your mucous membranes.

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I read the linked news story and related reports on google search. I did not find how the doctors established that the Neti was culprit as opposed to tap water/spray getting in her nose during a shower or bath. Is there any information available on this ?
An incidental spray of water in a shower or splashing in a bath is unlikely to deliver enough organisms deep enough into the sinus cavity to result in infection, and the sinuses are normally protected by a layer of mucous that is continually renewed and expelled. The use of a neti pot or other sinus wash temporarily removes this layer (presumably because it has become encrusted or congested) and leaves the bare sinuses exposed to infection, and the flooding of the sinus cavity with warm, potentially microorganism-rich water maximizes the potential for infection.

The odds of an actual infection are low—people have been using neti pots for hundreds of years with untreated water—but distilled water can be purchased at any large pharmacy or grocery store for under a dollar, and will remain essentially sterile as long as it is capped and not infused with any other substance. Even if the incidence of infection by using water that is not distilled or boiled is very low, the consequence of an infection (even if not N. fowleri, as anyone who has suffered a sinus infection and attendant symptoms can tell you) is severe, so the risk is high by default.

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Old 01-31-2019, 10:20 AM
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I'm completely ruined for private practice now, I tell patients exactly what I think they need to know; complete and unvarnished truth about their situation. Fortunately I don't have to face patient satisfaction surveys. Though most of my patients do seem to appreciate this direct approach.
I take it that you are a Dock Martin fan then https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbSeqGjftHI
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Old 01-31-2019, 10:34 AM
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How likely? Not very. The otolaryngology and Infectious disease experts all report that the risk is 'extremely low' and that it's a 'rare' complication. And that generally the risk is more for the elderly or immunocompromised. But the available data is just not good enough to to really give precise numbers.
Even if you don't get the brain-eating amoebas, is getting a more mundane infection possible or likely from using unfiltered/unboiled water?
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Old 01-31-2019, 12:20 PM
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Even if you don't get the brain-eating amoebas, is getting a more mundane infection possible or likely from using unfiltered/unboiled water?
I don't know, but I doubt it. Most sinus infections are caused by microbes that like to live in mammalian uppper respiratory tracts, not in water. Do you have any particular mundane pathogenic microbes in mind?
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:08 PM
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How low would that need to be before you decided to risk it?
Is it "I probably shouldn't drive because I just drank six beers" risky or is it "I better never go outdoors because I might get eaten by a bear" risky? Both of these are things which have killed some people. And both of these are things which some people have done and survived. But I think most people would agree that one is a sensible precaution and one isn't. Which one is rinsing your nose with tap water closer to?

Last edited by Little Nemo; 01-31-2019 at 02:09 PM.
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Old 01-31-2019, 04:15 PM
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neti pot user daily except for the week i recently spent in hospital [totally unrelated, was due to a chemo and radiation side effect] and i have an electric tea kettle in the bathroom that every morning i fill with well water and boil. Let it cool to body temp, rinse out the neti then refill and add the saline packet and use and finish by washing and rinsing out the pot after use. if i have a sinus issue, i may flush my sinuses several times a day, and will boil fresh kettles as needed.



been doing this for what, like 5 or so years now? love the neti pot, have had so many fewer sinus incidents since starting - maybe down to a couple colds a year. ocd cleanliness and person avoidance this past 10 months kept me from getting anything til i picked up pneumonia in the freaking hospital, stupid opportunistic bugs!
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Old 01-31-2019, 04:36 PM
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Given the unknowns, it makes little sense to risk infection compared to spending a few dollars per year to purchase distilled water.
Stranger
Its not the cost of the distilled water, it is the trouble of heating it up every single day. Between getting ready for work and getting the kids ready, mornings are chaos. If this neti pot operation take more than about 25 seconds or more than 10% of my mental capacity, it isn't going to happen. As the wise oracle once said, "Ain't nobody got time for that!"

So yea, I take the risk.
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Old 01-31-2019, 05:10 PM
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I don't know, but I doubt it. Most sinus infections are caused by microbes that like to live in mammalian uppper respiratory tracts, not in water. Do you have any particular mundane pathogenic microbes in mind?
No, I was just wondering- the media and people tend to make a lot of noise about relatively uncommon stuff, while ignoring the everyday things, so I wondered if that was the case here as well- they're making noise about the amoebas, but ignoring the thousands of other infections caused by using unsanitary water.
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Old 02-01-2019, 06:52 AM
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...An incidental spray of water in a shower or splashing in a bath is unlikely to deliver enough organisms deep enough into the sinus cavity to result in infection, and the sinuses are normally protected by a layer of mucous that is continually renewed and expelled...


Stranger
Thank you Stranger.

In the US media, yoga is often portrayed as something done predominantly by females or by hippy kind of people.

But Neti is also yoga, and has found wide acceptance amongst Americans of different ideologies.

As an Indian, it warms my heart to see this and I wish meditation gains more popularity too.
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Old 02-01-2019, 08:28 AM
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Just like we use distilled water for our patients with CPAP machines.
Not using one, I didn't realize you needed to use water with a CPAP machine. On reflection, it would be better to blow moist air up your upper respiratory tract.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:36 AM
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Is it "I probably shouldn't drive because I just drank six beers" risky or is it "I better never go outdoors because I might get eaten by a bear" risky? Both of these are things which have killed some people. And both of these are things which some people have done and survived. But I think most people would agree that one is a sensible precaution and one isn't. Which one is rinsing your nose with tap water closer to?
From a risk management perspective there are three concerns. Potential cost, likelihood, and cost of mitigation. The potential cost is huge, your life. The likelihood is vanishingly small, and the cost of mitigation is a couple of dollars a year for distilled water. For this reason I use distilled water but everyone has a different risk tolerance.
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Old 02-01-2019, 11:27 AM
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From a risk management perspective there are three concerns. Potential cost, likelihood, and cost of mitigation. The potential cost is huge, your life. The likelihood is vanishingly small, and the cost of mitigation is a couple of dollars a year for distilled water. For this reason I use distilled water but everyone has a different risk tolerance.
As Hermitian alluded to above, there's also a time/convenience cost in using distilled water. I can walk to the sink and adjust tap water to the exact temperature I want in about 5 seconds. How long does it take for a container of distilled water?
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Old 02-01-2019, 12:02 PM
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As Hermitian alluded to above, there's also a time/convenience cost in using distilled water. I can walk to the sink and adjust tap water to the exact temperature I want in about 5 seconds. How long does it take for a container of distilled water?
You could probably heat it in the microwave in under a minute. If you do it regularly, you could pretty easily figure the exact amount of seconds needed to heat a given volume to the desired temperature.
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Old 02-01-2019, 10:20 PM
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Exactly right. Microwave for 32 seconds with the neil med sinus rinse.
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Old 02-01-2019, 11:08 PM
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Exactly right. Microwave for 32 seconds with the neil med sinus rinse.
Or 45-50 seconds if you warm two squeeze bottles at once.
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Old 02-01-2019, 11:40 PM
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Exactly right. Microwave for 32 seconds with the neil med sinus rinse.
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Or 45-50 seconds if you warm two squeeze bottles at once.
For what wattage microwave?
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Old 02-02-2019, 03:04 AM
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For what wattage microwave?
Microwaves tend to be of similar wattage, between 1000 and 1500 watts. The reason is if they are too powerful or have too little power, the instructions for cooking on the back of frozen meals won't be valid. Normal power level seems to be 1100 watts.
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Old 02-03-2019, 12:36 PM
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What I haven't seen in this discussion is the fact that N. fowleri prefers hot water. The first I ever heard of brain eating amoeba was from signs near hot springs in Nevada warning people to not submerge their heads to to n. fowleri. You don't need those warnings in most lakes because the lakes are too cold for this organism to be infectious.

From wikipedia:

Quote:
Naegleria fowleri is a thermophilic (heat-loving), free-living amoeba. It is found in warm and hot freshwater ponds, lakes and rivers, and in the very warm water of hot springs. As the water temperature rises, its numbers increase.
...
N. fowleri occurs in three forms – as a cyst, a trophozoite (ameboid), and a biflagellate
...
Cysts are naturally resistant to environmental factors, so as to increase the chances of survival until better conditions occur. Trophozoites encyst due to unfavorable conditions. Factors that induce cyst formation include a lack of food, overcrowding, desiccation, accumulation of waste products, and cold temperatures.[4] When conditions improve, the amoeba can escape through the pore, or ostiole, seen in the middle of the cyst. N. fowleri has been found to encyst at temperatures below 10 °C (50 °F).
...
The trophozoite is the feeding, dividing, and infective stage for humans. The trophozoite attaches to olfactory epithelium, where it follows the olfactory cell axon through the cribriform plate (in the nasal cavity) to the brain. This reproductive stage of the protozoan organism, which transforms near 25 °C (77 °F) and grows fastest around 42 °C (106.7 °F), proliferates by binary fission.

...
This amoeba is able to grow best at moderately elevated temperatures making summer month cases more likely. N. fowleri is thermotolerant and able to survive 46 °C (115 °F)
- Naegleria fowleri

IANA Microbiologist, but from this, I would guess the problem is that the normal residential water heater is a near ideal environment for the proliferation of n. fowleri. Especially with the relatively* recent recommendation to lower your water heater setting to 120 F for safety reasons. So even using regular tap water strictly from the cold water side, and heating in the microwave is much lower risk that using water from the hot tap.


What this article doesn't really address (that I can tell), is how effective are normal water treatment processes are on the cyst form of the amoeba.

Also, how do the new "hot water on demand" water heaters work - would the water not stay in one of those water heaters long enough for the amoeba to proliferate?


* since I'm getting into the old fart age range, recently can be as much as before you were born, sonny. Get off my lawn!

Last edited by Zyada; 02-03-2019 at 12:38 PM.
  #39  
Old 02-03-2019, 02:31 PM
Bill Door Bill Door is offline
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Originally Posted by dougrb View Post
How low would that need to be before you decided to risk it?
Well, if the round trip to the retail establishment to obtain distilled water is 5 miles, you've got one chance in 10.6 million of dying in a motor vehicle crash on the way, so anything less than that is quite literally saving your life. Everything has a risk-reward ratio, Anny Middon just wants to know what it is.
  #40  
Old 02-03-2019, 03:47 PM
SamuelA SamuelA is offline
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Originally Posted by Zyada View Post
Also, how do the new "hot water on demand" water heaters work - would the water not stay in one of those water heaters long enough for the amoeba to proliferate?
Correct. This is one way to avoid such problems. Another way is you use a conventional tank heater set to 140 Fahrenheit or higher, but, critical step! - you install a hot water mixing valve. This is a special valve that automatically mixes in cold water to bring the temperature leaving the heater assembly down to around 104-110 Fahrenheit, which is below the temperature that you get scalds or burns.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Door View Post
Well, if the round trip to the retail establishment to obtain distilled water is 5 miles, you've got one chance in 10.6 million of dying in a motor vehicle crash on the way, so anything less than that is quite literally saving your life. Everything has a risk-reward ratio, Anny Middon just wants to know what it is.
Yes but you were going to make that trip anyways to purchase other supplies and groceries. No difference in the odds. Also, tap water can contain chlorine and other irritants.

Last edited by SamuelA; 02-03-2019 at 03:48 PM.
  #41  
Old 02-03-2019, 04:05 PM
Bill Door Bill Door is offline
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(snip)Yes but you were going to make that trip anyways to purchase other supplies and groceries. No difference in the odds. Also, tap water can contain chlorine and other irritants.
You've still got to amortize the risk across all of the items purchased and transported. None of them are risk free. That's my point; is the risk of using municipal tap water significant? Some people seem to believe that any risk is unacceptable; some are willing to put up with a little risk for the sake of convenience.
  #42  
Old 02-04-2019, 04:12 PM
Zyada Zyada is offline
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You've still got to amortize the risk across all of the items purchased and transported. None of them are risk free. That's my point; is the risk of using municipal tap water significant? Some people seem to believe that any risk is unacceptable; some are willing to put up with a little risk for the sake of convenience.
And compare that to the risk of not taking the action. Until recently, if you didn't go to the store to get food for yourself (assuming you couldn't talk someone you knew into doing so) you were at fairly high risk of starvation. I suppose you could get all your food delivered from Pizza Hut and the local chinese place, which would prevent that.

Now, if you don't want to risk driving to the store (or you can't for a variety of reasons), there are other options. Which will also serve to get you distilled water at the same time.

I think SamuelA's statement stands. You must get food, so getting distilled water does not carry a risk that you aren't already having to take. If you are in the extremely unusual (in this day and age) position of producing all your own food, I'd be surprised if you are still on a municipal water system.

Is the risk of using tap water significant? That's probably going to depend on a lot of factors, chief of which is, are you using water from your water heater or cold water? Next, is it summer in a warm state, vs winter in a cold state? (Most of the cases of n. fowleri seem to be from getting water from a freshwater lake or hot spring up your nose, not from neti pots).

Note that you don't even have to go buy distilled water. A jug of tap water, boiled and allowed to cool, and warmed in the microwave for 30ish seconds is all you need to do according to the CDC.

Also according to the CDC:
Quote:
In the 10 years from 2008 to 2017, 34 infections were reported in the U.S. Of those cases, 30 people were infected by recreational water, 3 people were infected after performing nasal irrigation using contaminated tap water, and 1 person was infected by contaminated tap water used on a backyard slip-n-slide.
So, extremely rare but also - approximately 97% fatality rate in known cases.

Last edited by Zyada; 02-04-2019 at 04:14 PM.
  #43  
Old 02-04-2019, 04:26 PM
Anny Middon Anny Middon is online now
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Thanks, all, for the input.

My take is that the risk in using tap water is pretty much negligible, due in part to the source of my tap water (Lake Michigan) and that our water heater is set for something like 125F.

Using distilled water would mean I'd have to make an additional trip from the upstairs bathroom to the kitchen (microwave) on the ground floor. There is of course a risk, albeit negligible, of suffering a fatal fall.

All in all, I think I'll risk the tap water.
  #44  
Old 02-04-2019, 04:26 PM
scr4 scr4 is online now
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You can also get nasal rinse with built-in filter. Those are supposed to be safe to use with tap water.

Personally I don't like those, as they are harder to clean, and take a while to dry out between use. I use water boiled in an electric kettle. My take is, if people die from it even though the instructions say not to do it, I should avoid it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Zyada View Post
Also according to the CDC: "....In the 10 years from 2008 to 2017, 34 infections were reported in the U.S. Of those cases, 30 people were infected by recreational water, ..."
What do they mean by "recreational water"? Swimming pools?

Last edited by scr4; 02-04-2019 at 04:28 PM.
  #45  
Old 02-04-2019, 04:53 PM
Irishman Irishman is online now
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Originally Posted by Hermitian View Post
Its not the cost of the distilled water, it is the trouble of heating it up every single day. Between getting ready for work and getting the kids ready, mornings are chaos. If this neti pot operation take more than about 25 seconds or more than 10% of my mental capacity, it isn't going to happen. As the wise oracle once said, "Ain't nobody got time for that!".
I've used a neti pot with distilled water. I didn't bother heating it, it was fine sitting in the jug.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertDog View Post
Not using one, I didn't realize you needed to use water with a CPAP machine. On reflection, it would be better to blow moist air up your upper respiratory tract.
It is not required - my original CPAP didn't have a water reservoir, and my current one can be used with or without it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Door View Post
Well, if the round trip to the retail establishment to obtain distilled water is 5 miles, you've got one chance in 10.6 million of dying in a motor vehicle crash on the way, so anything less than that is quite literally saving your life. Everything has a risk-reward ratio, Anny Middon just wants to know what it is.
As mentioned, if you're making that trip already, your additional risk for getting the distilled water is lowered, though the principle of dividing risk over reasons for trip (including other stops like going to work) is sound.

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Originally Posted by scr4 View Post
What do they mean by "recreational water"? Swimming pools?
I suspect ponds and lakes, but it's a fair question if pools are included in that.
  #46  
Old 02-04-2019, 06:19 PM
Zyada Zyada is offline
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What do they mean by "recreational water"? Swimming pools?
Lakes, ponds, hot springs, untreated hot tubs or swimming pools, etc. One of the most recent deaths was a man who had been to a small Central Texas water park last year- it sounds like they were not chlorinating the water the way most public swimming pools were. Since the death, the place has added some water filtration.
  #47  
Old 02-04-2019, 06:33 PM
Yeah Yeah is offline
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What do they mean by recreational water?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishman View Post
I suspect ponds and lakes, but it's a fair question if pools are included in that.
"Recreational water includes water in swimming pools, hot tubs, water parks, water play areas, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers, or oceans." - CDC
https://www.cdc.gov/healthywater/obs..._2008/rwi.html
  #48  
Old 02-05-2019, 03:22 PM
amaguri amaguri is offline
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i use distilled water, heated (mainly for comfort, not boiled), but i rinse the neti pot after use with *gasp* TAP WATER. hopefully that doesn't mean i'm going to die as a result.
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