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Severe infection with carnivorous bacteria - patient died after eating oysters


Eating Raw Oysters Cause Fatal Infection?

In the United States, a woman apparently contracted a deadly infection with carnivorous bacteria while eating raw oysters. The vibrations resulted in the patient's death within a few weeks. Infections with the dangerous pathogens can occur through the consumption of contaminated food (mostly raw seafood) or, for example, when bathing in sea water if the bacteria get into open wounds with the water.

After buying a bag of fresh oysters from a seafood market in Louisiana in September and eating them raw, Jeanette LeBlanc developed extreme breathlessness and a rash on her legs the next day, according to the US news broadcaster “CBS News”. LeBlanc was immediately taken to the hospital in Baton Rouge, where she was diagnosed with a vibration infection. Despite the therapy with antibiotics, however, the patient did not recover and finally died three weeks later from the consequences of the infection with the carnivorous bacteria.

Extremely aggressive pathogens

The life partner of the deceased told the local local broadcaster “1080 KRLD News Radio” that the doctors tried for almost 36 hours to stabilize the patient's condition. "But the bacteria are so aggressive that they destroy the kidneys and they had to start dialysis," the bereaved continued. After two weeks, the first of three operations to remove the dead tissue had taken place, then the second and finally the third. After the last one, LeBlanc never recovered. She passed away on October 15th.

Imminent complications from vibrion infections

Vibrions usually cause diarrhea when taken orally. However, there are threats of complications that can be fatal at worst, such as sepsis. Immune-weakened patients are particularly at risk here. If the bacteria get into open wounds, they can also cause serious wound infections and septicemia, warns the Robert Koch Institute (RKI). The infection usually occurs through the contact of open wounds with water containing pathogens (for example when wading or bathing) or when processing raw fish and seafood. Both apply to the deceased American.

Spread in marine bathing waters

According to the RKI, the occurrence of vibrions in marine bathing waters depends on salinity (salinity) and a high water temperature (increasing risk from 20 ° C). "These conditions can also be met in Germany in warm summers and lead to a strong multiplication of the pathogens, especially in the less saline estuaries, fjord and lagoon waters of the North and Baltic Sea," warns the RKI. In the United States, the National Health Agency Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates the number of annual vibrion infections at around 80,000 illnesses, although this is usually a type of food poisoning and those affected recover after a while.

Immunocompromised individuals are particularly at risk

A vibrion infection can quickly become dangerous for immunocompromised or other susceptible people. For example, according to “CBS News”, Jeanette LeBlanc had a gastric bypass that affected her digestion. This made them particularly susceptible to the pathogen. Whether these were actually absorbed through the eaten oysters or got into the body through open wounds remains rather secondary. People should be aware of both possible routes of infection and if they experience any complaints, after eating seafood or bathing in the sea, a doctor should be consulted immediately. (fp)

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