After the case of a college student from Georgia came to light, awareness of the devastation caused by the flesh-eating bacteria is paramount.
Necrotizing fasciitis is one of the rarest bacterial infections that can cause death after spreading through one's body in quick time. The symptoms of the infection include nausea, dizziness, and fever, soon after a surgery or injury.
CDC recommends that anyone experiencing the aforementioned symptoms should visit their doctor without wasting time. Live Science reported the case of 24-year-old Aimee Copeland who had to amputate her leg after the infection.
Copeland had a zip line accident last week when she fell on a broken zip line that gave her a cut on her leg. She got the stitches from the medical center and went home. Shortly, she started feeling immense pain in her leg.
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When she returned to the medical center, the doctors told her that she had to amputate her leg to stop the deadly infection from spreading.
Unfortunately, the infection spread to other parts of her body and Copeland will have to undergo additional amputations of her hands and the remainder of her leg soon.
Necrotizing fasciitis destroys the skin, muscles, and the underlying tissues in the body when it finds its way through an opening caused by injuries or cuts created during surgery.
Streptococcus pyogenes is the prime bacteria that causes the infection. It is the same pathogen that is also responsible for Strep throat.
The infection spreads very quickly if it attacks the connective tissue surrounding the blood vessels, nerves, and muscles.
The bacteria Streptococcus pyogenes manufactures superantigen, a contagion, which stimulates white blood cells called T-cells. This causes an overproduction of cytokines and wreck havoc on cells.
It is essential to treat necrotizing fasciitis immediately to avoid death. However, the problem lies in the diagnosis of the disease and the symptoms are similar to milder forms of infections.
Treatment of the disease includes strong, broad-spectrum antibiotics given directly through a vein, surgery in order to weaken the sore and eliminate dead tissue.
In some cases, a dose of antibodies called donor immunoglobulins is injected into the affected area to help fight the infection.
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