Hundreds of reports about flesh eating bacteria in Netherlands
Dutch hospitals have treated hundreds of patients with symptoms of an infection with flesh-eating bacteria in recent months. The RIVM received 374 reports of such infections between January 19 and the end of March, AD reports.
Symptoms of flesh-eating bacteria include things like pneumonia, blood poisoning, and inflammation of the skin, joints, or bones. Last year, the advance of flesh-eating bacteria mainly manifested in children. According to the RIVM, 42 children between 0 and 5 became seriously ill from these bacteria last year. That is seven times higher than in the previous years. Nine children died from the infection.
This year, the RIVM noted a remarkable increase in meningitis diagnoses. There were 18 reports between January 19 and March 31. For the past 40 years, the meningitis institute NRLBM recorded an average of five diagnoses per year.
The RIVM could not say what was causing the advance of this bacteria. The public health institute speculated that it could result from the coronavirus measures. Lockdowns meant that people had little contact with each other and, therefore, also with viruses and bacteria. As a result, people may now be more susceptible.
The Netherlands isn’t the only country seeing an increase in flesh-eating bacteria. The United Kingdom, France, and Ireland also reported an increase in people becoming seriously ill due to group A streptococcus.