Vibrio Vulnificus is back. Nicknamed ‘flesh-eating bacteria’ this scary-sounding bacteria frightened off way too many tourists and holiday makers from the beaches of Florida two weeks back.
However, the fear may not be unreal as a 26 year old Florida man has died after contracting the bacteria while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico off the Florida coast earlier this month, according to his mother.
Yeager’s death is Florida’s fourth Vibrio vulnificus fatality this year, Florida Department of Health spokeswoman Mara Burger told ABC News. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 35 people died of the disease in 2014.
Vibrio vulnificus is a flesh-destroying bacteria that is in the same family of organisms which cause cholera.
Cason Yeager, 26, contracted Vibrio vulnificus, while swimming south of Pine Island, Karen Yeager Mercer said in an interview with WTSP.
It is believed that people with recent bruises, fresh cuts/open wounds and lowered immunity are more susceptible to the effects of the infection as the bacteria gains entry via open cuts. People can also contract it from eating contaminated raw shell fish, leading to gastric symptoms: vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain.
Yeager, was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder 10 years ago. It is unclear whether that lead to an greater chance of fatality.He died on June 16 but the death certificate was not signed until June 23, and now his mother feels like she must warn everyone about the dangers of the bacteria.
“This has been a nightmare for me, to say the least, and nobody should have to go through this,” Karen Yeager said.
“I’m not telling anyone don’t go into the water,” Karen Yeager said. “Just do your due diligence and make sure that you’re not going to harm yourself.” The family has created a GoFundMe page for the family to help pay for funeral costs.