09 May 2012

Flesh Eating Bacteria Attacks Active Girl

Story first appeared on FOX News.

It was a zip lining accident that went from bad to much, much worse.

Just one week ago, a young woman, 24, was enjoying a trip kayaking down a creek with some of her friends in Carrollton, Ga.  But when she stopped to ride on a homemade zip line along the water, the line snapped and cut a large gash in her left calf.

Now the University of West Georgia graduate psychology student is in critical condition after a flesh-eating bacterium entered her body through the wound in her calf, causing her leg to be amputated Friday night, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

The Facebook page, “Believe and pray for a miracle to happen for Aimee Copeland” has been set up for people to stay updated on her progress.  According to a post on the page by her father the doctors have said her chances for survival are slim to none.

Initially, she had gone to the emergency room at the Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton on Tuesday after she had received the gash.  She thought the ordeal was over after the doctors stapled her leg up with 22 staples and told her to take pain medication, according to her father.

But she returned to the hospital Wednesday after she continued to complain of severe pain in her leg.  She was prescribed pain killers and sent home yet again. Based on the fact that she was misdiagnosed twice, Atlanta Medical Malpractice Lawyers say that the hospital could be responsible for the loss of her leg and possibly her life.

The pain still did not subside, so a friend drove a “pale and weak” woman to Tanner Medical again Friday morning.  When she arrived, an ER doctor diagnosed her with “necrotizing fasciitis” – a flesh-eating disease of the deep layers of the skin – in her damaged leg.

The surgeons advised her father that they wanted to try to save her leg, but at this point saving her life took precedence. They removed all of the infected tissue and advised that she would have limited, if any use of her leg.

The patient was then life-lighted to JMS Burn Center in Augusta, Ga., where doctors rushed her into surgery and performed a high-hip amputation of her left leg.  After surgery, she suffered a cardiac arrest, but the doctors were able to resuscitate her.

Since the surgery, she has made progress, but her condition may be getting worse as her five major organs have started to shut down.

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