Flesh-eating bacteria are the contributors of Necrotizing fasciitis. Characterized as a rare yet severe form of bacterial infections where the disease progression is rapid. According to the scientific reports released by the Centres of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the United States witnesses around 700-1200 new cases of Necrotizing fasciitis per year.
Mode of bacterial action:
Necrotizing fasciitis is characterized by destruction of the skin, subcutaneous tissue underlying it and muscle covering tissue.
Once inside, the bacteria spontaneously spread and targets both the muscle and fat tissues. Further, it initiates the release process of their toxins.
No sooner the bacterial toxin comes in contact with the tissues, it produces shocking effects which terminate into organ failure.
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Group A streptococci- the flesh-eating bacteria:
- Researches worked out on Necrotizing fasciitis highlights the group A streptococci to be the preliminary causative agent of the disease.
- Group A streptococci are also associated with Streptococcal pharyngitis, skin infections and toxic shock syndrome.
Symptoms of flesh-eating disease:
- Deep penetration of bacteria may not exhibit any noticeable symptoms in early stages.
- After about 3-4 days, the person may suffer from fever and feeling unwell.
- This stage shows a red, hot and blistered skin with intense pain.
- Oedema, swelling, skin crackling may be present.
- Other symptoms are inclusive of feeling confused, dehydrated, diarrhea, vomiting, blackening of tissue areas, intense pain unless nerve endings are damaged by necrosis.
Diagnosing and treating the flesh-eating infection:
Your doctor may examine and send few of your tissue samples for an appropriate lab testing. Once confirmed, the doctor may put you on an intravenous antibiotic therapy instantly.
The further treatment of the patients is done in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit).
Emergency surgery, in this case, is proven to be beneficial to wipe out the infected tissue, to prevent the infection then and there.
In the case of avoidance, the infection may shut down the functioning of your vital internal organs. Respiratory, heart and renal failure are some of the potent outcomes.
How to prevent yourself from the wrath of flesh-eating bacteria?
Post-surgery or injury care is essential as they sent an open invitation to the bacteria to penetrate the dermal layer and colonize further.
Adequate hygiene in and around major as well as the minor wound is effective in staying away from the bacterial attack.
Additionally, a self-awareness about spotting the infection signs at its first stage of striking is essential. Also, it is the sole responsibility of every individual to observe a proper hygienic routine to stay fit and healthy.