Sunday, July 17, 1994
Oxygen Aids Patient With Flesh-Eating Germ
Pure oxygen treatments have begun to kill the virulent strep infection that was destroying the skin and tissue on a Fillmore woman's leg, according to officials at Los Robles Regional Medical Center.
Guadalupe Pulido, 63, was rushed to the Thousand Oaks hospital Friday for special therapy to treat a condition popularly known as "flesh-eating bacteria." What started as a pimple a week earlier had spread from her roin to her knee and across her leg.
Dr. J.B. Wilmeth, who runs the hospital's hyperbaric medicine epartment, described Pulido's condition Saturday as critical but definitely improving, said a nurse working with him.
Pulido could be finished with the hyperbaric treatments within two days, but it is too early to tell what kind of follow-up treatment she will need, according to Wilmeth. Some victims require skin grafts, while others have enough healthy tissue that the sore can heal naturally, the doctor said.
On Friday, Wilmeth began treating Pulido in the hospital's hyperbaric chamber, a pressurized metallic cylinder that allows doctors to administer doses of 100% oxygen to patients. The oxygen helps kill the streptococcus bacteria and other germs causing the infection. It also makes the skin and tissue surrounding the open sore healthier and more resistant to the spread.
Copyright 1994 Los Angeles Times
Reprinted with Permission