Sunday, 22 July, 2018

Man could lose limbs after contracting flesh-eating bacteria in New Jersey waters

His family said he suffers from Parkinson's which puts him at an increased risk for severe infection His family said he suffers from Parkinson's which puts him at an increased risk for severe infection
Celia Hoffman | 12 July, 2018, 13:54

"Typically, when you get an infection like this, it enters through an existing wound and can spread throughout the bloodstream and can cause other complications such as necrotizing fasciitis, which he unfortunately got", said Cumberland County Health Officer Megan Sheppard. His forearms are black in color. The potentially fatal condition can be caused by several types of bacteria, striking 1,000 people in the United States each year.

The National Institutes of Health says that while Vibrio bacteria "is one of the more infrequent causes of necrotizing fasciitis", it has a 26 percent mortality rate because it rapidly spreads and it is hard to diagnose. They can be found in the ocean regardless of water quality, said Larry Hajna, a spokesman for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection.

The man had waded into the Maurice River on June 2 with the hopes of catching some crabs, family told WPVI.

Perez's family say the swelling and pain simply got worse.

A local family says their father is fighting for his life and his limbs. But if the antibiotics don't start working soon, doctors say they will have to amputate at least three limbs.

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Perez-Dilan said her father is not breathing well but on his own and is only able to slightly move his right arm - yet is in good spirits.

According to Perez's family, it only took a few hours for the infection to spread to all four of his limbs, turning his skin raw and red with blisters and scarring.

"He's been praising God nonstop", Perez-Dilan said. Most cases happen after an open wound comes into contact with "brackish or salt water", or after eating raw or undercooked shellfish, according to the CDC. He's just happy to have a second chance, ' she said.

She told WPVI that she wants people to know that "as much as we need water, it can be poisonous". It can be risky and we don't know what we're getting into when we get in there.

Perez's immune system was already compromised by Parkinson's Disease. But the New Jersey Health Department says if anyone has open cuts or scrapes, it's best to stay out of the brackish water.

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