David Ireland, 50, of Orlando, Fla. started having flu-like symptoms, including aches and fever, on August 16, his wife, Jody Ireland, told Fox News on Monday.
She said five days later, when the symptoms got worse and her husband complained of extreme pain in his groin and leg, she rushed him to the emergency room.
“It was unexpected,” she told Fox News. “He was fine one minute and sick the next.”
Since Ireland, a father of two girls ages seven and five, was admitted to the hospital, doctors have had to remove more than 25 percent of the skin from his body, and his kidneys failed, his wife said.
“I’m a mess. I’m trying to be strong for my kids. I miss him. I want my husband back,” she told Fox News, adding that her husband “is not responsive at all” and hasn’t been for the past five days.
Jody said that her husband was diagnosed with Necrotizing Fasciitis, a rare bacterial infection that spreads quickly in the body and can cause death, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Symptoms include fever, dizziness, or nausea soon after an injury or surgery.
The bacteria most commonly enters the body through a break in the skin, according to the CDC.
Jody told Fox News doctors told her that the bacteria entered her husband’s body through an open wound on his leg and “because he is diabetic, the bacteria turned into strep and started eating his flesh.”
She said her husband is scheduled for another surgery Tuesday.
She added that doctors told him, “his hands and feet might have to be amputated, if he even survives.”
Ireland is currently in critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit at a Florida Hospital and is on continuous dialysis and a ventilator, according to Jody.
“I have two doctors who say they are optimistic and one doctor who is saying something different,” Jody told Fox News.
“I am trying to keep the hope alive.”
Ireland’s brother set up a GoFundMe page to help with the unexpected medical costs.