Doctor shares ways to keep safe from flesh-eating bacteria

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WDKY) – The number of people reporting flesh-eating bacteria infections within the past few weeks has continued to increase. Jonathan Metcalf from Lancaster contracted one while on a Memorial Day trip with his family.

“I’ve been in mud holes, creeks, I’ve four-wheeled my whole life, never would have crossed my mind that something like this could have hit me,” stated Metcalf. “It’s something you see on Facebook that you think could never really be in your house.”

State Health Commissioner Dr. Jeffery D. Howard, Jr. talked about the infection commonly known as necrotizing fasciitis during a taping of Kentucky Newsmakers with Bill Bryant.

“That’s just when a bacteria can be introduced through a break in the skin that causes the tissue to die,” Dr. Howard explained.

Howard said infections like these do not happen every day but can happen to those with cracks in the skin or preexisting conditions.

“The flesh-eating bacteria is an extremely rare infection most often occurring in those who are already ill at baseline.”

Howard said if you have had surgery recently or have an open wound or cut, using soap and water and covering your wound properly can keep you from contracting an infection.

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