Warning: Graphic Content
An American woman has tragically died after contracting flesh-eating bacteria in a cut on her leg.
Lynn Fleming was walking in the sea on Coquina Beach in Florida earlier this month when she fell and made the small gash on her leg.
As it was just a small cut, said to measure around three quarters of an inch, the mother and her family didn’t think much of it. However, although the swelling on her leg went down, the cut wouldn’t heal over.
Speaking to Fox News, Lynn’s son, Wade, explained:
There was a little depression that she couldn’t see because it was under the water.
She fell into it, came out with a little ¾-inch cut; a bump on her leg. We got the swelling down, but it just kept bleeding.
A couple of days later Lynn went to the doctor, where she received a tetanus shot and a prescription for an antibiotic, but the following day Wade found her unconscious in her home.
She was taken to hospital, where doctors said she had contracted the bacteria, known as necrotising fasciitis, which affects the tissue beneath the skin and surrounding muscles and organs. Her leg was reportedly red and swollen and she had fallen ill with a fever – symptoms which were all signs of the flesh-eating bacteria infection.
The mother underwent surgery to try and to try and save her infected leg, during which she suffered two strokes and sepsis.
On Friday (June 28), Lynn sadly passed away.
Speaking of the tragic situation, Wade said:
It seems like a ‘Lifetime’ movie really. I can’t even believe it, that it’s really even happening. It’s just all happening so fast.
According to the NHS, necrotising fasciitis is rare but it’s estimated one or two in every five cases are fatal, even with treatment. People who survive the infection are sometimes left with long-term disability as a result of amputation or the removal of a lot of infected tissue.
The infection is a medical emergency which requires immediate treatment.
[The infection] can be treated. You get the open wound while playing at the beach, watch it, take care of it.
Wade’s wife Traci added how Lynn had hoped to retire in Florida, saying:
This is the place she loved. She couldn’t wait to get down here and retire.
She loved the ocean; she loved walking on the beach. Unfortunately, it’s [the] place that took her life by freak accident.
Our thoughts are with Lynn’s friends and family at this tragic time.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.
Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.