NC Teen Hospitalized With Rare Infection

A 14-year-old North Carolina boy is hospitalized with a rare infection that cost him part of his nose and five teeth after swimming in a local lake.

The Fayetteville Observer reports that doctors at UNC Hospitals
in Chapel Hill are treating Matthew McKinney for an infection caused by a bacteria called Chromobacterium violaceum, which was found in Hope Mills Lake.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says fewer than 150 cases have been reported worldwide since 1927.

Brian McKinney said his son is in serious condition but that antibiotics are beginning to clear the infection from the teen's blood.

Doctors had to remove the left side of Matthew's nose and palate, and his father said he lost five teeth. Brian McKinney said doctors won't consider reconstructive surgery until the infection is gone.


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  • by swimming in lakes on Jun 26, 2009 at 02:39 PM
    i once saw in a news story that lakes are good for carrying certain kinds of bacteria (since they are still water bodies), and these lakes can be found all over the country, esp in warm environments. the bacteria in the news story was some kind that destroyed brain tissue. the water had to go up one's nose in order to get the bacterial infection. once the infection hit, the chances were very slim for survival and the person had a few days at the most to live. im not swimming in ANY more lakes!!!
  • by APG Location: ENC on Jun 25, 2009 at 08:14 PM
    When I hear news like this, no matter how troubled I feel I realize things could always be worse. My prayers go out to this young man and his family. I pray for God to heal him and for the physicians to allow God's guiding hand.
  • by Zoban1 Location: Ar on Jun 25, 2009 at 07:15 PM
    Well are they closing down the lake to check it, try to clean it or something?
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