A 63-year-old man in Germany tragically died within days after being licked by his own pet dog. The man was healthy previously and caught a rare infection from his pet's saliva that struck him down with the devastating disease, doctors said.
How did the man die?
He had been infected with 'Capnocytophaga canimorsus', a bacteria which is normally transmitted by dog bites - but can also be spread through just a lick. His condition worsened, as the rashes spread all over his face and developed pain in his nerves and suffered from bruises all over his legs. From the time he started medical treatment, he already had sepsis and was sent to the intensive care unit (ICU) to save his life.
The bacteria progressed to his kidneys, his liver shut down and had blood clotting in his blood vessels. Eventually, his skin started to rot away, leading to a cardiac arrest and his demise. His cardiac arrest was caused due to development of fungal infection in his lungs, which led to pneumonia, blisters over his entire body and gangrene in his fingers and toes.
The Man went to the hospital with flu-like symptoms
The man was admitted for more than two weeks in the hospital with the rare condition and it spiralled into many other diseases including pneumonia, gangrene and a fever of 41C. He first went to the hospital with flu-like symptoms, which include fever and breathing problems. His brain scan revealed a massive build-up of fluid in his brain, which caused permanent damage to the brain.
He was admitted at the Rote Kreuz Krankenhaus hospital in Bremen, Germany and the team of doctors led by Dr, Naomi Mader, wrote, "Pet owners with flu-like symptoms should urgently seek medical advice when their symptoms exceed those of a simple viral infection, which in this case were (breathing problems and rash). Physicians confronted with such patients should ask about contact with dogs and cats."
The rare disease reportedly affects only one in every 1.5 million people and proves fatal to 31 per cent of the cases. The case report was published in the European Journal of Case Reports in Internal Medicine.