71-year-old dies after eating oysters tainted with flesh-eating bacteria

71-year-old dies after eating oysters tainted with flesh-eating bacteria

71-year-old dies after eating oysters tainted with flesh-eating bacteria

The Florida Department of Health said that the 71-year-old man in Sarasota died following his seafood meal July 8 at a local restaurant.

A Sarasota man died of a flesh-eating bacteria after eating raw oysters.

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A Florida man's bacteria infected oysters eaten at a restaurant in Sarasota killed him a few days later, The Sun-Sentinel reported.

Health officials say that the man's death was caused by a bacteria known as Vibrio vulnificus, which is commonly found in oysters and other types of seafood.

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"Vibrio is a bacteria and it lives in saltwater, or brackish water, so any water that has salt in it, and it's there essentially all of the time", said Michael Drennon, disease intervention services program manager of the Sarasota County Florida Department of Health, to WWSB. The department of health website says this is the first confirmed case and death of Vibrio vulnificus in Sarasota County this year. There were no reported cases a year ago, officials said. Manatee County has had one case of flesh eating bacteria so far in 2018, but no fatalities. While infections are rare, people can contract the bacteria by eating contaminated raw shellfish, or by exposing open wounds such as cuts or scrapes to water. Florida health officials say anyone with open wounds should keep them covered with clean, dry bandages when swimming. They also advise people with weakened immune systems to wear proper foot protection on the beach to prevent cuts and injuries from rocks and shells.

Symptoms can include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, fever and chills, rapid pulse, rapid breathing, wound infections and intestinal infections. The bacteria does not change the appearance, odor or taste of an oyster.

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