LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – A 12-year-old Arkansas girl who survived a rare and often fatal infection caused by a brain-eating amoeba says she is lucky to be alive.
Kali (KAY'-lee) Hardig, her parents and doctors spoke to reporters Wednesday before she was released from Arkansas Children's Hospital.
Kali says she has missed playing with her dog and seeing friends after being hospitalized in July.
The girl was diagnosed with an infection caused by a brain-eating amoeba. Health officials say there were 128 reported infections in the United States between 1962 and 2012. Before Kali, doctors could only point to one known survivor in the U.S. and another in Mexico.
Health officials believe Kali became sick after a trip to an Arkansas lake. The amoeba is often found in warm, fresh water.