It's flesh-eating bacteria season in Galveston, expert warns

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GALVESTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A Galveston wellness adept is informing the assemblage astir the anticipation of flesh-eating bacterial infections on the coast.

The corruption is caused by a bacteria called Vibrio vulnificus, which is commonly known arsenic a flesh-eating bacteria. It tin beryllium recovered successful earthy oregon undercooked seafood specified arsenic oysters, and it's people contiguous successful brackish and brackish water.

According to the CDC, symptoms of an corruption tin commencement 12 to 72 hours aft exposure. In immoderate cases, it tin pb to amputation oregon death.

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Dr. Alfred Scott Lea, prof of infectious illness astatine University of Texas-Medical Branch, said successful the Galveston Bay area, they spot astatine slightest six to 8 cases each year. UTMB successful Galveston is 1 of the infirmary systems with the highest fig of occurrences successful the country.

"We typically spot Vibrio from precocious June, aboriginal July, to astir apt aboriginal [in] October," Dr. Lea said. "That's the season, and that's erstwhile the tourists are here, too."

Dr. Lea said it's an assertive corruption and needs to beryllium treated decently and immediately.

"They request to fto their healthcare supplier cognize that they person been successful the h2o on the seashore truthful that the physicians cognize to beryllium watching for Vibrio," Dr. Lea said. "It takes a antithetic benignant of antibiotic than what the doc would ordinarily issue, and the lone cardinal that the doc volition prime up connected is that they've been successful that estuary oregon brackish h2o (while) sportfishing and shrimping oregon crabbing."

According to the Galveston County Health District, determination was 1 lawsuit of Vibrio corruption successful 2020. So acold this year, determination person been 2 cases of corruption and neither of those resulted successful death. However, if idiosyncratic is infected portion astatine a formation successful Galveston County past goes location oregon is treated successful different county, past the lawsuit would beryllium investigated by the region wherever the diligent is being treated, not GCHD.

"Amputation happens successful astir fractional of the patients adjacent successful the champion of hands, and past radical tin dice from it," Dr. Lea said. "It's a superior infection. The worst thing: it's truthful rapidly progressive, it volition popular up and termination a idiosyncratic wrong 24 hours if you are not careful."

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