A 13-year-old boy in Seattle has just been released from a hospital after surviving the ravages of a flesh-eating bacteria. CBS affiliate KIRO-TV reports Trey Lauren spent three weeks at Seattle Children’s Hospital while an aggressive bacteria ate at his leg from the inside.
The infection started shortly after Lauren cut his leg with a nail and received six stitches. Five hours later his leg was so swollen it looked like a balloon. An MRI at the hospital determined the infection was eating him alive. The doctors said he was 12 hours away from losing his leg and two days from losing his life.
“I was awake during that and that just freaked me out,” he told CBS News.
In the following 23 days at the hospital, Lauren underwent 13 surgeries. His parents thought they’d lose their son. “I had to tell my mom and dad, ‘I got this,'” he recalled. “It was like someone shot me with adrenaline, y’know? It was like, ‘all right, let’s do this.'”
Flesh-eating bacteria — also known as necrotizing fasciitis — occurs when bacteria enters the body through a skin wound, such as a cut, scrape, burn or bite. When the toxins from the bacterias find their way to the bloodstream they spread rapidly and kill connective tissue around muscles, nerves, fat and blood vessels. Often the initial symptoms, such as redness, pain, swelling, blisters, fever, nausea and vomiting may be mistaken for other conditions, leading doctors to initially misdiagnose a patient.
A number of bacteria types can cause the infection, including E.coli and Staphylococcus , but A Streptococcus , or group A strep bacteria, is the most common. Necrotizing fasciitis most typically impacts individuals who have weakened immune systems from medical