Adrian Ruiz contracted Vibrio after visiting the beach Saturday and is fighting to keep his leg, his family said. Vibrio usually spreads through open wounds in saltwater where the bacteria is found.
A Father’s Day vacation turned into a nightmare for one Hays County family. They took a trip to Rockport, where one of the family members got what doctors believe may be a flesh-eating bacteria.
Over the weekend Buda resident Adrian Ruiz was running a fever and woke up with a rash on his leg. A few days later, he’s ended up in the ICU at Seton Hays not knowing if his leg will be amputated. “I’m fearful for him, possibly losing his leg. I don’t want to think that’s going to happen, and I told him we are going to be very positive,” said his wife La Shelle.’
It is believed that Adrian got the bacteria while swimming in the ocean at Port Aransas. Saturday night he started feeling sick. “When he told me at 3 o’clock in the morning that his ankle was burning, he was already running a fever, I was like something’s not right,” La Shelle said.
Sunday morning Adrian went to urgent care, where the doctor diagnosed him with Cellulitis and also gave them a scary warning. “Once the doctor looked at his foot and said ‘I think this is Cellulitis, but I know that you’re telling me that you’ve been at the beach water. I am not trying to alarm you or scare you, but there has been flesh-eating bacteria that’s been reported in Galveston (and) Port O’Connor.’”
The family made their way home back to Buda, and Adrian’s leg started blistering. Monday afternoon he was admitted to the ICU at Seton Hays, with the diagnosis of Vibrio Vulnificus a flesh damaging bacteria.
Earlier in June, a Houston man had to get his leg amputated after getting a similar infection when he went to a beach in Galveston. Dr. Fausto Meza works at Seton Hays. “It’s something that happens when the water tends to heat up our Gulf Coast, you’ll see stories about it in Galveston, Corpus, or Padre. The warning is if you have a wound, an open cut or something that is susceptible to infection and if you’re immune-compromised, you don’t have the best health, and you’re out in the water, sea water in particular, what they say brackish kind of water,” he said.
La Shelle said beach-goers should be warned. “I think the cities need to post stuff on the beaches, and let people know, because if we would have known there was flesh-eating bacteria that was there, we wouldn’t have entered,” she said.
But despite all of this she’s said she’s grateful it wasn’t worse. “He’s going to live, that’s the main thing. So at least he has life still that’s the biggest thing of all. We believe in God, and we just ask people to pray because that’s what will get him through,” she said.
Dr. Meza wants to clarify that Vibrio is not an antibiotic resistant bacteria such as MRSA. Adrian is on four different antibiotic IV drips and doctors are hopeful they can still save his leg.