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Dead at 38 years young

(7 Posts)
Rhiannon Thu 02-Aug-01 23:00:20

A friend of a friend died last night. He was 38.
He was bitten on the foot by an insect in his garden 4 weeks ago and had been in hospital ever since as it became infected.

Doctors wanted to remove part of his foot to stop the infection but he knew this would endanger his job as a bodyguard to an MP so refused hoping the antibiotics would work.

Insect bites don't kill people in this country I hear you say, no you're right but if you're also diabetic they can. His glucose levels went out of control and he developed a condition called cellulitus.

Diabetes is now the 3rd biggest killer in this country - quote from the Daily Mail yesterday, the day he added to the statistics.

Alibubbles Fri 03-Aug-01 11:56:21

I'm really sorry to hear your sad news, that's really tragic Rhiannon. Our local councillor died suddenly after cutting himself in the garden, it got infected and I think he got tetanus or some like illness, although he was vaccinated. Deaths from garden related injuries are becoming more and more common. Vey sad, our thoughts are with you.

Kia Fri 03-Aug-01 18:47:01

Rhiannon so sorry to hear your news. Its frightening how quickly life can be lost and from such a 'minor' thing like a bite.

Suew Fri 03-Aug-01 20:31:05

Rhiannon sorry to hear of your friend.

My own grandfather was diabetic although his was late onset. Whilst in his early 80's he got an infected cut on his foot which led to his leg being amputated, learned to walk again on a false leg, then it started all over again in the other leg which was just too much for him to deal with and he died.

My SIL has been diabetic since her teens and is blind as a result. She is very much as risk of small injuries turning into something major and has regular (weekly or fortnightly I think) check-ups with a doctor for her feet and other extremities.

Copper Sat 04-Aug-01 11:51:33

Rhiannon
how awful and how scary. My husband is diabetic, my 6 year old has just had an infected insect bite - it could have been him, just as easily. We'll watch out for this now.

Here in SW London there seems to have been a rash of really nasty infected bites - I know 5 people who have had horrendous reactions, all on antibiotics with ghastly swellings on legs, arms, forehead. My son's arm swelled up to twice its normal size overnight - we didn't even know he had been bitten, so the infection must have got in with the bite. Is this happening anywhere else? The chemist said there seemed to be a lot of it about this year.

Suew Sat 04-Aug-01 15:34:10

Copper, I have had bad reactions to mosquito bites since I was about 18yo. They have swelled to the size of a dinner plate (yes, really! often swelling up half my arm or the best part of my thigh, all around) and in the past have caused blisters the size of 2p pieces (assuming 2p pieces haven't changed since I left the UK 8mo ago!).

The first time it happened I was prescribed antibiotics. The second I was given anti-histamines. After that I gave up on going to the docs and now I try very hard not even to rub, let alone scratch, if I get any kind of itch, even before the initial bite appears. Difficult to explain this to kids, I know.

Last year it sort of stopped and this year I have only had one bite, on my hand which caused the entire hand and fingers to swell to the wrist. Other bites have been the simple small swelling. I no longer even take OTC anti-histamines as I don't want to spend a fortune on drugs for something which is, in the end, merely an unsightly inconvenience. However, were I to get any signs of blood poisoning e.g red lines, I would be down to the docs like a shot.

Some might think this makes light of it but it's something I can live with but as far as I am concerned there's a difference between reaction and infection - and none of mine have been infected.

Rhiannon Sat 04-Aug-01 19:03:39

Thanks for the messages, just wanted to highlight how serious a condition like diabetes can be. It is very important for anyone with diabetes to take care of their feet, not just bites but any break in the skin of their feet.

I have today found out that he also had septacaemia (spelling?) but a post mortem turned out to be inconclusive.

A non-religious service will be held for him on Wednesday.

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