Houston Woman Dies of Flesh-Eating Bacteria After Hurricane Harvey

A 77-year-old Texas woman died as a result of flesh-eating bacteria after falling into floodwaters caused by Hurricane Harvey, according to The Houston Chronicle. 

Nancy Reed died Sept. 15 of necrotizing fasciitis, an infection that spreads through muscle tissue and can cause organs to fail. She fell at her son’s home in Kingwood, breaking and cutting her arm, The Chronicle reported.

Reed is the 36th death officially linked to Hurricane Harvey and its aftermath, which led to more than 75 deaths across the state, according to The Chronicle.

“Nancy was a kind, caring member of the Kingwood community and gave of her time and many talents generously,” her obituary said, according to The Chronicle.

“It’s tragic… this is one of the things we’d been worrying about once the flooding began, that something like this might occur,” said Dr. David Persse, the city’s emergency medical services director, according to The Chronicle.

Floodwaters from Harvey, which made landfall in Texas in late August, have mostly receded, but a risk of bacteria remains, according to reports.

The bacteria could still be present on anything that the hurricane floodwaters touched, Dr. Umair Shah told ABC-TV station KTRK.

“People think, ‘Oh, I don’t have water anymore, I’m not at risk,'” Shah said.

A former paramedic in Missouri City, Texas, also contracted flesh-eating bacteria while trying to help neighbors during the hurricane, but he survived, according to KTRK.

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