Strep A survivors who have had all four limbs amputated, parents warn

Alex has warned parents to be vigilant (Image: Daily Echo/Solent News)

A father who had all four limbs amputated and a facial reconstruction after contracting Strep A has warned parents to be vigilant as a seventh child in the UK has died of the infection.

Alex Lewis, 42, thought he had ‘man flu’ in 2013 but collapsed and was rushed to hospital where he was given only a three percent chance of survival.

He had contracted Strep A followed by septicemia.

Reports that a Hampshire schoolboy has become the eighth victim after contracting the rare, invasive infection brought everything back to Alex.

Alex told the Daily Echo: “I saw an interview with the father of a little girl at Alder Hey hospital and it was pretty raw.

“I can only imagine what he’s going through and I know my family has been through something similar. It’s tough.’

It comes as a wave of the infection hit Britain in the last month.

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Alex Lewis thought he had ‘man flu’ in 2013 but collapsed and was rushed to hospital where he was given a 3% chance of survival (Image: Daily Echo/Solent News)

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Before Alex lost all four of his limbs and contracted Strep A in 2013 (Image: Family/Solent News)

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Group A Streptococcus is the name of a type of bacteria sometimes found in the throat or on the skin.

It usually causes mild illnesses like a sore throat and skin infections, and most people carry it without symptoms.

However, in rare cases, these bacteria can cause a serious and life-threatening disease called invasive group A streptococcal disease.

Although still uncommon, cases of invasive group A streptococcus in children aged one to four are currently four times more common than normal, according to figures from the UK Health Security Agency (UKSHA).

Health officials urgently need to introduce community testing to combat elevated rates of Strep A this winter, a virologist has warned.

Alex told the Daily Echo: “I saw an interview with the father of a little girl at Alder Hey hospital and it was pretty raw.

“I can only imagine what he’s going through and I know my family has been through something similar. It’s tough.

“It’s great that the press is raising awareness. I think it’s important for parents not to panic as it’s cold and flu season but with a low baseline immunity after two years without mixing things are spreading in schools and it’s a pretty worrying time.

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Alex with his son Sam back in 2014 (Image: Daily Echo/Solent News)

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“Don’t be afraid to ask for advice and help. We know the NHS is under a lot of pressure but contact your GP, call 111 or go to A&E if necessary and give your child antibiotics.

‘Caution is the mother of the china box. I am very happy to be here. Don’t be afraid to push for your child to be seen.”

Alex, who lives in Stockbridge with his wife Lucy Townsend and son Sam, almost 12, is a patron of the Lee Spark NF Foundation.

It is the only UK charity providing help and support for anyone affected by severe strep infections or necrotizing fasciitis.

Get in touch with our news team by emailing us at webnews@metro.co.uk.

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https://metro.co.uk/2022/12/06/strep-a-survivor-who-had-all-four-limbs-amputated-issues-warning-to-parents-17884355/ Strep A survivors who have had all four limbs amputated, parents warn

Justin Scacco

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