Sushi Eater Had His Arm Amputated Due to Bacterial Infection from Raw Fish
A 71-year-old man lost his hand and forearm after consuming sushi due to a bacterial infection from raw fish. His left hand became excruciatingly painful and swelled up like a golf ball 12 hours after the unnamed man took the fish.
The South Korean’s man also developed bruises and huge blisters from the infection that was triggered by eating raw seafood.
Before putting the man on antibiotics, medics tried to drain the blister and removed the infected tissues.
Unfortunately, their efforts didn’t bear fruit and flesh-rotting ulcers developed on his hand and turned out much damaged that it had to be amputated.
Doctors Couldn’t Help
The unlucky man tried to seek the assistance from Jeonju doctors in South Korea, which is about 118 miles from the capital Seoul. This was after he suffered extreme pain in his hands and a fever for two days.
In reference to the New England Journal of Medicine, the man said that the fever and huge blisters in his hand developed just 12 hours after he took seafood. On his hand was a blister that measured 3.5cm by 4.5cm – nearly the size of a golf ball – while others spread on his forearm and at the back of his hand.
The ill-fated man was diagnosed with vibriosis, which is an infection caused by bacteria known as Vibrio vulnificus.
And the diagnosis added an insult to injury for this elderly man who also had high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, and end-stage kidney disease which he was undergoing dialysis.
Surgery and Antibiotics Couldn’t Work
Even after trying their level best, the medics couldn’t get in control of the man’s condition. They injected two types of intravenous antibiotics and operated on the man’s hand but his condition continued worsening.
Deep ulcers started developing on his hand which led to necrosis – the death of living tissues with potential ability to spread and causes irreparable damages.
Diabetics are at a higher risk of complications resulting from skin ulcers because the condition impairs the proper flow of blood and nutrients to the skin. This lengthens the healing process and the skin may not heal at all in certain circumstances.
The man’s left hand and forearm were amputated 25 days after eating the fateful meal to prevent the spread of the rotting tissue.
It is estimated that 80,000 Americans are affected by vibriosis every year. That’s equivalent to one in 4,000 people.
Most of these infections occur following the consumption of contaminated seafood like shellfish or oyster, or exposure of an existing wound to seawater infected with the bacteria.
Recovery within Days
Healthy people normally recover from the infection within days without serious complications. However, complications and increased risk of infection are high in patients with weakened immune systems.
Following the amputation surgery, the patient responded well and was discharged.
55-Year-Old Woman Dies after Indulging Raw Oysters
In a related case, a woman aged 55 from Texas died in October last year after an infection from flesh-eating bacteria while visiting her friends in Louisiana.
Jeanette LeBlanc became sick after she went crabbing and then consuming raw oysters that they had picked up with a friend from a market in Westwego.
Speaking to Louisiana news station KLFY, LeBlanc’s friend said she became sick after they consumed the raw oysters.
Karen Bowers said that it first appeared like her friend was having an allergic reaction. However, her condition worsened in the next 48 hours when she was hospitalized and diagnosed with vibriosis.
LeBlanc died on October 15 after fighting with the bacteria for 21 days.