Five people from Connecticut have been hospitalized after contracting flesh-eating bacterial infections from the waters of the Long Island Sound, health officials confirmed.
According to the Connecticut Department of Public Health, five cases of Vibrio vulnificus infections have been confirmed since July, WNBC reported.
All five patients, four of whom are men, range in age from 49 to 85. One patient is from Fairfield County, one is from Middlesex County and the other three are from New Haven County, the TV station reported.
According to USA Today, all five patients had preexisting wounds or were injured while swimming, crabbing or boating in salt or brackish water before acquiring the flesh-eating bacterial infections in July and August. Although three patients suffered only serious wound infections, the other two patients developed Vibrio vulnificus infections in their bloodstreams.
“The identification of these five cases over two months is very concerning. This suggests the Vibrio bacteria may be present in salt or brackish water in or near Long Island Sound, and people should take precautions,” state Epidemiologist Dr. Matthew Cartter said in a prepared statement.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about one-fifth of all diagnosed with Vibrio vulnificus infections die, but no deaths have been linked to the Connecticut cases, USA Today reported, noting only seven cases total have been confirmed statewide in the past 10 years.
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