A tourist in Hawaii was stabbed by a tree – and became infected with a rare carnivorous bacterium that caused her legs to rot, the report said.
The 72-year-old woman was walking in the field with lava when she lost her balance and was hit by a branch near the ground, according to a case published Tuesday in the medical journal BMJ Case Reports.
Six days later, she visited a local clinic, received stitches and was sent home on a course of antibiotics, the researchers said.
But after the medication was over, she became concerned about skin discoloration and a foul odor, Woundweek reported.
She visited the emergency department of Washington state, where she was diagnosed with a rare carnivorous bacterium known as Leclercia adecarboxylata or L. adecarboxylata, the researchers said.
Researchers say the pathogen found in the aquatic environment is rare among patients with a healthy immune system, although it may be responsible for death.
The woman underwent surgery to cut the infection from her leg and was then discharged with more antibiotics six days later, the researchers said.
In their findings, the researchers called on doctors to consider bacteria as a possible cause of infection even among patients who are not immunocompromised, the source said.