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A case of Dog lick that led to amputation of limbs

A case of  Dog lick that led to amputation of limbs

A case of infection by bacteria Capnocytophaga has been reported which led to the amputation of limbs of a patient reportedly after a dog lick.

A 48-year-old man named Manteufel from Wisconsin was perfectly healthy, but what he initially thought was the flu landed him in the emergency room. He contracted a blood infection after he was licked by a dog, that led to the amputation of his legs and parts of his arms. Unfortunately, the most likely source of the devastating infection was his own dog.

Surprisingly within a week, the doctors had to amputate both of his legs and, later, portions of his hands and forearms. The decision of amputations was taken after the infection caused his blood pressure to fall drastically thereby severely reducing blood flow to his limbs and leading to ischaemia and tissue death.

Blood tests revealed that Manteufel’s infection was caused by a bacterium called Capnocytophaga, according to Fox 6 Now.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Many species of Capnocytophaga bacteria live in the mouths of dogs and cats. Up to 74 per cent of dogs and 57 per cent of cats have Capnocytophaga, but the bacteria don’t cause illness in dogs and cats.

Rarely, Capnocytophaga species can spread to humans through bites, scratches, or close contact from a dog or cat and cause illness. Most people who have contact with a dog or cat do not become sick. People with weakened immune systems who have difficulty fighting off infections (for example, people with cancer or those taking certain medications such as steroids) are at greater risk of becoming ill.

After getting infected with Capnocytophaga, there is spread of bacteria through the bloodstream which causes infections in various parts of the body, including a blood infection known as sepsis. Sepsis occurs when the immune system responds overwhelmingly to an infection, triggering body-wide inflammation and, potentially, organ failure.

Most people who get sick with the bacteria typically start experiencing symptoms within three to five days of becoming infected, but symptoms may occur anywhere from one to 14 days after infection, according to the CDC. Symptoms include blisters, redness, swelling, pus or pain around the animal bite location (if a bite was involved), fever, diarrhoea, headache, vomiting, and muscle or joint pain. The infection can sometimes lead to gangrene, or tissue death, and require amputations to save the rest of the body.

Dr. Silvia Munoz-Price, an infectious-disease specialist with Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin told Fox 6 Now that the case is extremely rare. “More than 99 per cent of the people that have dogs will never have this issue. It’s just chance,” she said.


Source: With inputs from Fox 6

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