Carolyn Fleming from Ellenton, Florida was spending the week with her husband and their two children, Jonathan and Jensen, at Anna Maria Island when she fell into a small dip in the water. The fall left her with a cut on her left leg. The cut was easily cleaned up by a lifeguard and gave her bandage. Little did they know that this accident will cause Fleming’s life.
After the accident, Fleming had no unusual symptoms. One of her sons cleaned the cut the next day before leaving her. However, Fleming called her family on a Saturday afternoon, telling them that she was in pain. The wound became a lot worse as the weekend passed. On Sunday, her friends insisted that she seek professional help because her leg had become red and swollen. Although Fleming received a tetanus shot and a prescription for an antibiotic, she didn’t get any better.
|Carolyn Fleming / Photo Credit: CNN|
NBC News, the news division of the American broadcast television network NBC, reported that Fleming was hospitalized after her friends found her unconscious on her bedroom floor. She was diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis which is commonly known as flesh-eating bacteria. To fight the deadly infection, she was required to undergo surgeries. Fleming suffered two strokes and kidney failure after dying last on June 27.
|Photo Credit: CNN|
The family is hoping that this can educate other people and save lives through sharing Fleming’s story. CNN, an American news-based pay television channel, reported that the flesh-eating bacteria can stop blood circulation and cause the tissue to die and skin to decay. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that there are roughly 700 to 1,200 cases reported each year in the US.
|Photo Credit: Traci Fleming on Facebook (via NBC News)|
Dr. Stephen Spann, dean of the University of Houston College of Medicine, said that those who are vulnerable to this type of bacteria include "people who have some sort of a chronic disease that suppresses their immune function, or maybe they are on immunosuppressive drugs like corticosteroids. Or they have liver disease or a disease called hemochromatosis.”