Woman Fighting For Her Life After Contracting Flesh-Eating Disease

CARROLLTON, Ga. (CBS Atlanta) — A 24-year-old graduate student is battling for her life after contracting a flesh-eating bacteria during a zip-lining accident which lacerated her leg.

Aimee Copeland, a grad student at West Georgia University, was zip-lining Tuesday when she suffered a laceration to her calf that caused her to receive 22 staples.

After suffering the injury, Copeland went to the emergency room Wednesday with severe pain and got a prescription for a painkiller which helped alleviate some of the discomfort. She went back Thursday and got a prescription for antibiotics and a clean MRI report. On Friday, a friend took Copeland to the hospital when she was too pale and weak to move and that’s when a Tanner Medical Center emergency room physician diagnosed her with necrotizing fasciitis, a flesh-eating bacteria.

She underwent surgery at Tanner to remove the infected tissue and was then air-lifted to JMS Burn Center in Augusta.

“The surgeons advised me that they wanted to try to save her leg, but at this point saving her life took precedence,” Andy Copeland, Aimee’s father, said on the Facebook page “Believe and pray for a miracle to happen for Aimee Copeland.”

Doctors there completed a high-hip amputation of her left leg. After surgery, Aimee Copeland went into cardiac arrest but doctors were able to resuscitate her.

Her condition worsened overnight.

“Aimee’s survival chances are ‘slim to none,’” Copeland wrote on a University of West Georgia psychology blog page. “She continues to experience a major shutdown of all five major organs.”

She is currently using a respirator to breathe.

Friends have set up a donation page to help the Copeland family at this time.


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