Tom Scott

The Brain-Eating Amoebas of Kerosene Creek

Kerosene Creek is a natural hot spring near Rotorua, on the North Island of New Zealand. And there have been official warnings for years: don’t put your head under water. It turns out that “brain-eating amoebas”, naegleria fowleri, are a real, if rare, thing.

Thank you to Associate Professor Siouxsie Wiles! Here are some of the references used for this video:

Bonifield, J. (2019). Fatal brain-eating amoeba may have come from woman’s neti pot. Retrieved from

Hermelingmeier, K., Weber, R., Hellmich, M., Heubach, C., & Mösges, R. (2012). Nasal Irrigation as an Adjunctive Treatment in Allergic Rhinitis: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. American Journal Of Rhinology & Allergy, 26(5), e119-e125. doi: 10.2500/ajra.2012.26.3787

Piper, K., Foster, H., Susanto, D., Maree, C., Thornton, S., & Cobbs, C. (2018). Fatal Balamuthia mandrillaris brain infection associated with improper nasal lavage. International Journal Of Infectious Diseases, 77, 18-22. doi: 10.1016/j.ijid.2018.09.013

Yoder, J., Straif-Bourgeois, S., Roy, S., Moore, T., Visvesvara, G., & Ratard, R. et al. (2012). Primary Amebic Meningoencephalitis Deaths Associated With Sinus Irrigation Using Contaminated Tap Water. Clinical Infectious Diseases, 55(9), e79-e85. doi: 10.1093/cid/cis626

Edited by Michelle Martin (@mrsmmartin)

I’m at
on Twitter at
on Facebook at
and on Instagram as tomscottgo

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

SciShow Quiz Show: The Ultimate Tiebreaker
Sundials don’t mess around
Should you catch a tossed coin? – Numberphile
We Should Let Some Wildfires Burn
Why Do We Get Nervous?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *