- Laura Barajas contracted a bacterial infection from eating undercooked tilapia.
- Barajas had to have all of her limbs amputated because of the infection.
- The CDC warns that Vibrio vulnificus infections are increasing due to warming waters.
In California, a mother had to have all her limbs amputated after eating an undercooked piece of tilapia.
Laura Barajas, 40, bought the fish at a local San Jose market last month, which she cooked and ate at home alone, her friend Anna Messina wrote in a GoFundMe campaign.
Barajas spent more than a month in the hospital battling an infection with Vibrio vulnificus bacteria before having all of his limbs removed on Wednesday, according to Messina.
“We ask that you please find it in your heart to support this beautiful family during this incredibly difficult time,” Messina wrote. “What happened to them could happen to any of us, and together we can make a meaningful difference.”
On September 1, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a health advisory, warning of an increase in Vibrio vulnificus bacterial infections in the United States due to increasing water temperatures.
Vibrio vulnificus is a bacteria that thrives in the warmer waters of the Gulf of Mexico, according to the CDC. The Vibrio bacteria is known to cause about 80,000 illnesses in the United States each year, according to the agency.
In Galveston, Texas, a man died over Labor Day weekend after eating oysters contaminated with Vibrio vulnificus on Aug. 29, according to FOX 26 in Houston.
Signs of a Vibrio vulnificus infection are watery diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, vomiting and fever, according to the CDC. An infected wound may have redness, pain, swelling, warmth, discoloration and drainage, according to the department.
The CDC says the most common cause of Vibrio infections is eating undercooked or raw oysters and shellfish.
“Do not eat oysters or other shellfish raw or undercooked. Cook them before eating them,” the CDC recommends. “Always wash your hands with soap and water after handling raw shellfish.
The CDC also recommends staying away from salt water if you have an open wound to avoid Vibrio infection.
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