First posted: Thursday, July 09, 2015 07:16 PM EDT | Updated: Thursday, July 09, 2015 07:22 PM EDT
MINNEAPOLIS - A 14-year-old boy died on Thursday from a rare brain infection state health officials believe he contracted while swimming in a lake in central Minnesota, his family said.
The Minnesota Department of Health said the child had developed a very rare and severe brain infection caused by a freshwater amoeba called Naegleria fowleri, commonly known as brain-eating amoeba, while swimming in Lake Minnewaska about 115 miles northwest of Minneapolis.
Hunter Boutain died surrounded by his family, his uncle, Bryan Boutain, said in a statement. He was being treated at University of Minnesota Masonic Children's Hospital.
"Hunter's condition deteriorated throughout the night and he was declared brain dead this morning," Boutain said in the family statement. "It is a deeply emotional time for all us. We ask for privacy and prayers as we remember our beloved Hunter."
It was only the third documented case in Minnesota of Naegleria causing the brain infection called primary amoebic meningoencephalitis. The prior two cases were linked to a different lake in 2010 and 2012 and also proved fatal.
The state health department said Naegleria infections are far more common in warm southern states and there were 35 reported in the United States from 2005 through 2014.
The organism enters the body through the nose, typically during swimming or diving in warm freshwater, the state health department said.
Teen dies from rare brain infection after swimming in Minnesota lake | World | N