WATCH: Flesh-eating bacteria- 10 P.M.


GARFIELD. DAYS LATER, HE AND HIS FAMILY KNEW SOMETHING WAS GRAVELY WRONG. WAYNE ATKINS TAKING SOME OF HIS FIRST STEPS AT THE UNIVERSITY OF MIAMI HOSPITAL, MORE THAN A MONTH AFTER HIS FAMILY SAYS A HIKE IN THE WHITE MOUNTAINS TOOK A NEAR-DEADLY TURN, ALL FROM SOMETHING THAT AT FIRST SEEMED SO MUNDANE. WAYNE’S MOTHER, KAREN GAUDREAU, A NURSE, SPOKE TO NEWS9 FROM MIAMI, WHERE SHE’S HELPING HER SON THROUGH TREATMENT.>>HE PLAYED SOME SOCCER AND REALLY NOTICED BLISTERS AND AN AREA OF REDNESS ON HIS SHIN. CHERISE: BUT THOSE BLISTERS TURNED OUT TO BE FAR MORE SERIOUS THAN WAYNE COULD’VE IMAGINED.>>HE WENT TO THE HOSPITAL THINKING HE HAD A BLISTER THAT MADE HIM SICK. CHERISE: THAT WASN’T THE CASE. DOCTORS DIAGNOSING WAYNE WITH A FLESH-EATING BACTERIA KNOWN AS GROUP-A STREP. BY THE TIME KAREN ARRIVED AT HER SON’S BEDSIDE IN THE HOSPITAL, THINGS WERE GOING DOWNHILL FAST.>>BY THE TIME I GOT TO MIAMI THAT NIGHT, HE WAS ALREADY AND LIVER FAILURE, KIDNEY FAILURE, HE HAD ACUTE RESPIRATORY DISTRESS SYNDROME, WHERE YOUR LUNGS TO WITH FLUID. CHERISE: WAYNE WAS THEN PUT IN A COMA FOR TWO AND A HALF WEEKS, DURING WHICH DOCTORS CUT AWAY SKIN AND ADMINISTERED ANTIBIOTICS, AND THANKFULLY MANAGED TO GET AHEAD OF THE INFECTION. DOCTORS TELLING HIS FAMILY AGE AND GOOD HEALTH WERE ON WAYNE’S SIDE.>>THERE ARE MANY WORST-CASE SCENARIOS. CHERISE: RIGHT NOW, WAYNE’S FAMILY TELLS US THERE’S NO DATE SET AS TO WHEN HE CAN LEAVE THE HOSPITAL. HE’S EXPECTED TO RECEIVE SKIN GRAFTS NEXT WEEK. AFTER THAT, HE’LL CONTINUE TO BE MONITORED AND CONTINUE REHABILITATION. MEANTIME, THEY SAY HE WAS PROPERLY PREPARED FOR THE HIKE, WEARING THE RECOMMENDED SHOES AND SOCKS TO PREVENT THIS FROM HAPPENING. MEANTIME, BETH DALY FROM HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES TELLS US THERE ARE ABOUT 700 TO 1000 CASES OF THIS INFECTION IN THE COUNTRY EVERY YEAR. THIS PARTICULAR STRAIN IS THE SAME ONE THAT CAN CAUSE STREP THROAT.

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