Increasing number of patients, especially in central Tokyo and Osaka [Cannibal Bacteria] Fear of Streptococcus hemolyticus with a fatality rate of 30%. | FRIDAY DIGITAL

Increasing number of patients, especially in central Tokyo and Osaka [Cannibal Bacteria] Fear of Streptococcus hemolyticus with a fatality rate of 30%.

When the disease strikes, the limbs swell to twice their size and the patient is in severe pain.

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Streptococcus spp. are arranged in a chain of bacteria. Antibiotics are used for treatment, but they cannot reach the affected area, which has become rotten and unable to circulate blood, and the only way to treat it is to amputate it.

A woman in her 60s was brought in unconscious, and a purple swelling was found on her right leg. When doctors made an incision, they found numerous fungi attached to the fascia. Within a short time, necrosis developed in both legs, and the legs had to be amputated.

A terrible disease is spreading, causing the limbs to swell to twice their size and leading to death while suffering from severe pain. It is called “fulminant Streptococcal Streptococcal Infection. Masahiro Kami, president of the Institute of Medical Governance, explains.

The disease is commonly referred to as ‘man-eating bacteria’ because the onset of the disease causes rapid swelling and decay of the limbs at a rate of several centimeters per hour. The only way to stop the necrosis is to amputate the affected area. In some cases, the disease becomes serious and death occurs in a short period of time, just a few hours. The fatality rate is as high as 30%.”

The number of cases of “flesh-eating bacteria” is increasing, especially in urban centers such as Tokyo, Aichi, and Osaka. According to the Ministry of Health, Labor, and Welfare, the number of cases of infection was 622 in 2009, 732 last year, and 263 in late April of this year. Cannibal Bacteria are transmitted into the body through droplets from sneezing and other sources. The new coronavirus has weakened the immune systems of many people, and the number of patients is thought to be increasing. Eiji Kusumi, director of Navitas Clinic, explains.

Streptococcus is a very common bacterium that lives in the pharynx and on the skin. On the other hand, in rare cases, it can enter the bloodstream or muscles and cause a fulminant illness. Initial symptoms are similar to those of the common cold, such as fever and lethargy. However, the condition deteriorates quickly, and the fungus seeps into the body’s tissues, causing necrosis to spread rapidly in the deeper parts of the body.

Dr. Yoshikata Shimizu of Okaya Municipal Hospital in Nagano Prefecture, who actually examined the patient, recalls.

I have seen 13 patients, but only four survived. They died of shock before we knew what kind of disease they had. Only three of the patients lived more than a year.

If you have symptoms such as fever, sore throat, and swollen limbs, you should see a doctor as soon as possible.

A leg that has developed fulminant hemolytic streptococcal infection and necrosis.’ Discovered and reported in the United States in 1987. The first case in Japan was reported in 1992, and since then, several hundred people have been infected every year.

From the June 9, 2023 issue of FRIDAY

  • PHOTO Getty Images (1st photo) Courtesy of Shimizu, Okaya Municipal Hospital (2nd photo)

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