Outlook 'cautiously optimistic' in new brain-eating amoeba case

The year's fourth known case of a brain-eating amoeba infection in the U.S. has been identified in Florida, and the patient has received a drug that has helped save the lives of two other people with the same deadly infection, according to CNN.

"This is the most optimistic, cautiously optimistic, I've been so far as compared to other cases," said Todd MacLaughlan, the CEO of Profounda, the manufacturer of the drug. He is more optimistic than in past cases because the patient received the drug very quickly — it was delivered to a Florida hospital in less than 30 minutes, according to CNN.

The drug is Impavido, or generically, miltefosine. One treatment can cost $48,000, and it just this year became available for hospitals to order.

The amoeba, Naegleria fowlerii, causes primary amebic meningoencephalitis, or PAM, which is nearly always fatal.

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