Usually, people who get new tattoos are advised to wait for two weeks before going swimming and this is to avoid getting an infection, but a man failed to heed that warning and went ahead to swim, leading to his death.
The 31-year-old, whose name was not given, went swimming in the sea in the Gulf of Mexico only five days after getting a cross tattooed on his right calf.
After swimming, the deceased’s tattoo area became infected with flesh-eating bacteria and he developed a fever and serious rash surrounding the tattoo area. Two days later, his condition deteriorated and he was taken to hospital. Doctors saw patches on his leg had turned a bruised purple color so they suspected he had the Vibrio vulnificus infection – which he was at a higher risk of due to suffering from a chronic liver disease.
The man was placed on a life support machine but his organs began to fail within 24 hours. He had a drinking habit which is believed to have already weakened his liver, thereby making him more vulnerable to infections. For a couple more weeks, his condition remained stable before he went into septic shock, and his kidneys failed completely. He died two months after his admission into hospital.