BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - We're learning details about a fishing trip near Horn Island with stunning consequences. One of the fishermen on that trip was Gregory Bru, Sr. He got so sick, he had part of his leg amputated. Friends say it was a result of the Vibrio Vulnificus infection.
Meanwhile, the Mississippi Department of Health confirmed the state's first reported case of Vibrio Vulnificus infection this year. We do not know if the reported case is the same patient we learned about.
Doctors say Vibrio is a bacteria that infects cuts or scrapes that's often found in salty brackish water. You can also get it from eating raw oysters.
Dr. Jay Grimes is with the Gulf Coast Research Lab. His scientists are very familiar with the bacterium in the waters off Mississippi's coastline.
"What you relate is a very sad but expected outcome from infections with Vibrio Vulnificus (Vv)," he told WLOX News. "Most healthy people that become infected with Vv develop redness and swelling around the cut or scrape and that's about it."
However, if you happen to be a diabetic, an immuno-suppressed patient, an alcoholic or you have liver issues, Dr. Grimes said you are especially vulnerable to Vv complications and may lose limbs or even die.
In the Sunday case, friends say Bru had his lower leg amputated after getting splashed by the gulf waters while boating near Horn Island. The fisherman is reportedly recovering at Singing River Hospital. That hospital, Dr. Grimes notes, is where a leading expert on Vibrio Vulnificus has successfully treated several bacteria infections.