Rare Case of Flesh-Eating Bacteria Confirmed in New York, Alert Issued

Health officials continue to provide warnings about a rare flesh-eating bacteria that killed a New York State citizen.

According to the newest CDC study, New Yorkers have lately been sick with the rare disease.

Vibrio vulnificus infections are confirmed in three states, including New York.

According to the CDC’s newest results, at least 11 cases occurred between June and August 2023 in three states: New York, Connecticut, and North Carolina.

At least two people become ill in New York. Seven were infected in North Carolina, and two in Connecticut.

The majority resulted in serious complications such as septic shock or death.

A rare fatal bacterial infection killed a Suffolk County, Long Island, New York resident.

Over the summer, New York Governor Kathy Hochul acknowledged that a Suffolk County resident died immediately after testing positive for vibriosis.

“While rare, the vibrio bacteria has unfortunately made it to this region and can be extraordinarily dangerous,” Hochul went on to say. “As we investigate further, it is critical that all New Yorkers stay vigilant and take responsible precautions to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, including protecting open wounds from seawater and for those with compromised immune systems, avoiding raw or undercooked shellfish which may carry the bacteria.”

It’s uncertain whether Suffolk County got infected in New York waters or elsewhere. Anyone can contract vibriosis, but those with liver illness, cancer, or a weaker immune system, as well as those on stomach acid-lowering medication, are more likely to become infected or develop difficulties, according to the New York State Health Department.

“While we continue to examine the source of this rare sickness, homeowners should be alert and cautious about steps that can be taken. As always, if any citizens have health concerns, we advise them to call their doctor,” Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone stated.

The New York State Department of Health is encouraging health care clinicians throughout the state to consider vibrio vulnificus when treating patients with severe wound infections or sepsis, with or without wound infections.

“We’re encouraging clinicians to keep an eye out for cases of vibriosis, which isn’t always the first diagnosis that comes to mind. We also recommend that New Yorkers avoid swimming in warm seawater if they have sores. “If you have a compromised immune system, you should also avoid handling or eating raw seafood that may contain the bacteria,” New York State Health Commissioner Dr. James McDonald stated.

Three people died from a rare flesh-eating bacteria.

The CDC states that five people died.

“Vibriosis is caused by numerous types of bacteria, including Vibrio vulnificus bacteria, which occurs naturally in salty coastal areas and is more abundant from May to October when the temperature is warmer. Vibriosis infection can result in a variety of symptoms, including diarrhea, stomach cramps, vomiting, fever, and chills. According to a news release from Hochul’s office, exposure can also result in ear infections, sepsis, and life-threatening wound infections.

According to the CDC, the affected individuals were exposed to coastal waters or seafood.

The CDC reported that all of the instances occurred amid “record-breaking” heat waves.

The New York State Department of Health has developed guidelines to assist avoid vibriosis. Click here to find out what officials recommend.

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