California Mom, 40, Loses All Four Limbs After Catching Vibrio While Eating Undercooked Tilapia for Dinner
- Laura Barajas, 40, lost all four of her limbs after contracting a bacterial infection caused by undercooked tilapia fish.
- The mother underwent a surgical amputation on Thursday after a month-long stay in hospital battling the terrible infection.
A California mother lost all four of her limbs after contracting a bacterial infection caused by undercooked tilapia fish.
Laura Barajas, 40, underwent a life-saving surgical amputation on Thursday after a month-long stay in hospital battling the terrible infection.
Barajas, mother of a six-year-old boy, fell ill in late July a few days after eating fish she bought at a local market in San Jose and prepared herself at home, said a friend. revealed to News 19.
“This has been very heavy on all of us. It’s terrible. This could have happened to any of us,” Barajas’ friend Anna Messina told the outlet.
“She almost lost her life. She was on a ventilator,” Messina said.
Laura Barajas, 40, underwent a life-saving surgical amputation on Thursday after a month in hospital battling the terrible infection.
Barajas, the mother of a six-year-old boy, fell ill in late July a few days after eating fish she bought at a local San Jose market.
“They put her in a medically induced coma,” she said.
“Her fingers were black, her feet were black, her lower lip was black. She had complete sepsis and her kidneys were failing.
The infection is believed to have been caused by vibrio vulnificus, a bacterial infection that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently issued a warning against.
“There is one way to get infected with this bacteria: you can eat something contaminated with it, the other way is to have a cut or tattoo exposed to the water in which this bacteria lives,” he said. explained Dr. Natasha Spottiswoode, an infectious disease expert at UCSF. .
About 150 to 200 cases of infection are reported each year, and about one in five infected people die, the CDC said.
The bacteria is of particular concern for people who are immunocompromised, according to Spottiswoode.
“People should take reasonable precautions, for example if you have a cut, avoid submerging yourself in water until it is well healed,” Spottiswoode said.
“If you are an immunocompromised person, watch for these things and avoid high-risk activities and foods.”
Jose Valdez (right), Barajas’ partner of eight years, has been by his side throughout the ordeal, friends say
Barajas, now a quadruple amputee, is the mother of a six-year-old boy named Gael
“Be grateful for what we have right now, because it can be taken away so quickly and so easily,” Messina added.
Messina has create a GoFundMe page to help her friend cover her medical expenses and ongoing care needs. ‘
“This family desperately needs our help. Although José enjoys health benefits from his work, it remains uncertain whether they will cover Laura, his Messina partner of eight years, who has raised more than $26,000 so far, wrote on the page.
“José’s paid leave has run out and the Family Disability program only provides 60% of his normal income.
“The mounting hospital bills are overwhelming and Laura’s physical condition will require significant changes to their lives as they adjust to her new situation,” she added.