California Woman Forced to Have All 4 Limbs Amputated After Eating Undercooked Tilapia

by Xara Aziz
Family of Laura Barajas

A California mother was left no choice but to have all four of her limbs amputated after she ate a piece of undercooked tilapia.

Laura Barajas, 40, had bought the fish from a San Jose market in August, then cooked and ate the fish at home, according to a GoFundMe campaign created by her friend Anna Messina.

After eating the fish, she would spend more than 30 days at a local hospital fighting Vibrio vulnificus, a species of Gram-negative, motile, curved rod-shaped, pathogenic bacteria of the genus Vibrio. On Wednesday, doctors had to remove her limbs.

“We kindly request that you find it in your hearts to support this beautiful family during this incredibly challenging time,” Messina wrote. “What has happened to them could happen to any of us, and together, we can make a meaningful difference.”

Earlier this month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an advisory, which cautioned that there has been an increase in Vibrio vulnificus bacterial infections in the U.S. due to increasing water temperatures.

Vibrio vulnificus thrives in the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico, according to the CDC, which added that the bacteria can cause up to 80,000 illnesses in the U.S. each year.

Over the Labor Day weekend, a Texas man died after consuming oysters that contained the same bacteria, FOX 26 reported.

“Signs of a Vibrio vulnificus infection are watery diarrhea, stomach cramping, nausea, vomiting, and fever, according to an Insider report via the CDC. “An infected wound may display redness, pain, swelling, warmth, discoloration, and discharge, according to the department.”

The CDC further recommends that people should not “eat raw or undercooked oysters or other shellfish. Cook them before eating. Always wash your hands with soap and water after handing raw shellfish.”

Furthermore, it is advised to stay out of salt water if you have an open wound so as to prevent contracting a Vibrio infection.

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