A British woman has been left in a coma after contracting a cat scratch flesh disease, reports the Bristol Post.
Last year, Shirley Kos, a 65-year-old grandmother at the age of five from Winterbourne, reportedly felt dizzy after the "wild" Siamese cat, Chan, scratched her bones and left a wound. Although Hair initially thought he had the flu, the wound became infected and his knuckle turned red. Later, the redness spread from her hand to her hand.
"The scratch was quite deep, but I didn't think much about it until I started to get flu symptoms and completely lost my appetite," she told the newspaper. "A doctor came to see me and prescribed antibiotics, but after a few days, I felt worse than ever."
The grandmother was taken to hospital last April, where she was diagnosed with sepsis, septic shock, organ failure, pneumonia and necrotizing fasciitis – the last of these is a rare bacterial infection that causes tissue death and can lead to severe pain, dizziness and ulcers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The hair was then placed in an induced coma, which lasted five days. During this time, family members noted her progress in a diary.
"Mom, you had a rough night your heart stopped beating, but then it restarted – we are all so worried," reads a message from her daughter, Rosie, a home manager. "We know you are strong, but you are also tired. We are ready to recover. If love can fix you, you would be home already."
In fact, the hair underwent two heart attacks following a procedure to remove dead tissue, i.
"The medics were amazing, but even after the emergency surgery to remove the tissue, I just kept getting worse," Grandma recalled. "I felt like I was going to die. I couldn't believe all this could happen from a simple scratch."
Hair was reported to remain in the intensive care unit for one month before showing signs of improvement.
"After getting out of the coma, I was severely paranoid about the combination of infection and medication," she said. "I became convinced I was responsible for everything. My son James told me the cat did it, but I didn't believe him. I thought they were all covering for me. It was so painful."  The 65-year-old told the Post that she acquired Chan in 2016 when the cat was only a 10-week-old kitten. Over the years, the kitten has claimed to be "pretty savage" and often attacks its owners.
"We used to have Siamese cats before and we knew they could be a little nasty, but thought with some love and affection that he would be the perfect family pet," she said. "But with the advancement of Chan, he only gets more aggressive, often leaving us with bites and scratches."
After eight operations – one in which she received a graft from her leg – and more than two months in the hospital, Hair said she was grateful that her family had been with her throughout the process.
"My memory is not as good as it used to be. I can be quite distracted nowadays and I'm definitely not as sharp as I was before I got sick," she said. "But I'm here and that's all that matters."