Like something out of a horror movie, necrotizing fasciitis is a flesh eating bacterial infection. Although rare, this infection can eat away at the skin, muscles, fat, nerves, and blood vessels near the wound it has invaded. Most cases occur randomly, but being aware of this medical nightmare keeps us informed and alert for our health and lifestyle choices. There are 8 types of bacteria that can cause necrotizing fasciitis which include Group A Streptococcus (also causesstrep throat), Kelbsiella, Clostridium, Aeromonas hydrophila, Acinetobacter calcoaceticus (in rare cases), Haemophilus influenzae (very rare), Escherichia coli (E. coli, responsible for food poisoning), and Staphylococcus aureus (the same bacteria that causes MRSA staph infections).
Necrotizing fasciitis enters the body through either an insect bite, burns, cuts, scrapes, surgical wounds, or other puncture wounds including those form using intravenous drugs. It is very rare to spread the infection, so it isn’t considered contagious. Because it is so uncommon, symptoms aren’t necessarily clear. Some signs that might indicate necrotizing fasciitis has entered the body include having puss or oozing from the infected area, having ulcers, blisters, or black spots on the skin, having a red/swollen area of the skin that is spreading quickly, fever, nausea, dizziness, changes in the color of your skin, and fatigue. There are a few health factors that could put someone at higher risk for getting this. These include cancer, kidney disease, cirrhosis of the liver, and diabetes. For some people these ertain health conditions impede the body’s ability to fight infection as well as it could
We can take natural precautions to potentially avoid necrotizing fasciitis. Proper wound care is critical. Taking care of cuts as soon as they happen and keeping them covered should be done. Changing the bandages and keeping them dry should be regularly done. Using oil of oregano on wounds can help the body fight off some of the strands of bacteria that cause necrotizing fasciitis. This is particularly true for wounds exposed to unsanitary water. That being said, avoiding public water is also a good idea when you do have a wound. This includes public pools, lakes, ponds, and the ocean. Colloidal silver can also be used on the wound. Another natural treatment is called negative wound pressure therapy (NWPT) which is referred to as “vacuum dressing”. It draws out the fluid.
Treatment right away is necessary because necrotizing fasciitis can lead to shock, organ failure, and/or sepsis. Furthermore, the most recent data has shown that 1 in 5 people who get necrotizing fasciitis have died from it. Ignoring the healing process of wounds and exposing ourselves to bacteria as they are healing is a risk no one should take. As soon as possible always take care of wounds. Don’t share items such as razors or needles that can also expose yourself to cuts and punctures that carry bacteria. The risk is too high no matter how close you may be to someone. We have learned to wash our hands and the same should be said for properly taking care of our wounds.