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Harvey Flesh-Eating Bacteria Strikes Again

Harvey Flesh-Eating Bacteria Strikes Again

Paul Morris checks on neighbors homes in a flooded district of Orange as Texas slowly moves toward recovery from the devastation of Hurricane Harvey on Sept. 7, 2017. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

By    |   Wednesday, 25 October 2017 06:50 AM

Hurricane Harvey-connected flesh-eating bacteria has struck again with a third case being diagnosed since the storm back in September.

The Galveston County Health District issued a warning Monday about necrotizing fasciitis, a rare bacterial infection that kills soft tissue. The infection was not related to Vibrio vulnificus, bacteria naturally found in beach water, the district wrote.

Josue Zurita was diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis two week ago when he entered a hospital to address a seriously infected wound on his upper left arm and died six days later, KHOU-TV reported.

"He's a very caring person," said Brenda Avalos, wife of Josue's cousin Anastacio, per KHOU-TV. "He has a lot of friends here in Galveston that loves him. Everybody is very sad. He was very young and always smiling."

Zurita had lived in Texas for 12 years after leaving Mexico, finding work in Galveston as a carpenter and was doing demolition work after Hurricane Harvey when he became infected, noted the television station.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, necrotizing fasciitis can spread quickly once they enter the body, attacking the fascia, connective tissue that surround muscles, nerves, fat, and blood vessels.

The CDC said toxins made by the bacteria can destroy the tissue they infect, causing it to die, where those suffering from the bacteria can lose limbs or die.

"It's most likely this person's infection occurred when bacteria from Harvey debris or floodwater entered his body through a wound or cut," Dr. Philip Keiser, Galveston County Local Health Authority, said. "This is a very rare infection but that doesn't make it any less heartbreaking for this person's family and friends."

KHOU-TV reported earlier this month that J.R. Atkins, survived the bacteria.

"I thought it was a mosquito bite that had gone haywire," Atkins told KHOU-TV on Oct. 10, who was working as a first responder. "We all have had those ones that just grow...the next morning when I woke up, it had gone sideways across my wrist."

Atkins spent 11 days in a hospital and went through three surgeries before finding out that he had contracted a flesh-eating bacteria while doing rescues in the Houston suburb of Missouri City, the television station stated.

The Houston Chronicle reported that Nancy Reed, 77, died on Sept. 15 from necrotizing fasciitis after earlier falling into Hurricane Harvey floodwaters at her home, according to a Harris County medical examiner's office ruling.

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Hurricane Harvey-connected flesh-eating bacteria has struck again with a third case being diagnosed since the storm back in September.
harvey, flesh-eating, bacteria
Wednesday, 25 October 2017 06:50 AM
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