ELBERTA, Ala. (WALA) - Recently, the Gulf Coast has been hearing more and more about a potentially-deadly bacterial infection called Vibrio Vulnificus. It has infected more than 31 in Florida and now, cases along the Gulf Coast have been found.
On Thursday, FOX10 News interviewed Elberta resident Robert Bactchelder. He told FOX10 News he never imagined something like this happening while working on his boat, in dry dock at his home. What happened over the next two months nearly killing him…all from a little cut on his hand.
“Mine came from a barnacle. A little ding I got on my hand and it went right to my knee,” said Batchelder.
With that, his life changed.
“It’s been a life-altering experience,” he said.
“Batch,” as he’s known to many in the neighborhood and church, said because of his type-2 diabetes and bad knee, he was a prime suspect for the potentially, deadly bacteria to attack.
“If you’ve got a compromised immune system, it’ll go to that,” he said.
“Batch” cut his hand in August and for the past two months, has been in the hospital and now his home, recovering from three open sores on his right leg.
“I started getting sore and swelling and discoloration. And it was rapid. Very rapid. Almost lost my leg and almost lost my life,” he said.
He said with the doctor’s help, he is now able to walk again…and most importantly, live.
“It was just literally rotting faster than they could cut it away. It was very scary. Very painful. Most painful thing I’ve ever experienced in my life,” he said.
Now, “Batch” has to change his bandages twice a day in his converted living room, now “sick room” as he calls it. But that is the least of his worries…
”I just thank God for the support I’ve gotten from my family and my church on this. They’ve stepped up and my wife…bless her heart, she has really stepped up the plate and helped me out. Lucky to be alive.
You don’t have to look far long to find somebody a little worse off than you.”
“Batch” told FOX10 News is will take another 6-8 weeks until doctors can decide whether he will get a skin graph. FOX10 News will continue to monitor his condition and update you in the weeks to come.
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