Lymington yachtswoman nearly lost her leg to flesh eating bug

Daily Echo: Hannah White Hannah White

AS a yachtswoman she has single-handedly braved dangerous icebergs and treacherous conditions in the world’s most terrifying seas.

But Lymington sailor Hannah White almost died after she was bitten by a spider and was infected with a deadly flesh-eating bug – while doing press ups in her local park.

The spider bit the 29-year-old’s right thigh causing her leg to swell to twice its normal size.
She was put in quarantine and doctors told her she would die unless they removed part of her thigh.

However Hannah, who spent seven years as a professional sailor in competitions, including gruelling solo transatlantic races, managed to fight off the aggressive infection.
Now recovering at home she told the Daily Echo that she is lucky to be alive.

She said: “I honestly couldn’t believe how quickly I deteriorated. One moment I was in the gym and having lunch with friends and the next I was in a hospital bed fighting the most aggressive infection.
“The hardest thing was that for 48 hours while I was in hospital it only got worse. The doctors were concerned and put me on standby for emergency surgery.

“I couldn’t believe there I was discussing the possibility of having major surgery or possibly losing my leg.”

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Hannah, who is now a broadcaster and commented on the sailing events at this year’s Olympics, said she got the bite while exercising in Regent’s Park near her London home eight days ago.

When her thigh began to  swell she went to an NHS drop-in clinic, where she was prescribed antibiotics and allowed home.

Within days the pain became unbearable and her parents, from Lymington, took her to A&E at St Thomas’ Hospital in London.

At first doctors thought it was an abscess but then realised Hannah had the symptoms of the rare flesh-eating bug necrotising fasciitis, which occurs when certain bacteria gain access to the body through certain abrasions and can lead to multiple organ failure.

Doctors said the only way to kill the infection was to cut it out but thankfully, because she is fit and healthy with a strong immune system, Hannah’s body began to fight the bug.

She said: “My friends and family were unbelievable and we just had to try and stay strong.
“I am now at home but I feel completely exhausted from fighting this.

“I have travelled the world doing potentially dangerous things and I have been fine. I still can’t believe it.”

Comments (5)

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12:29pm Mon 19 Nov 12

southy says...

A bleach wash can be use all so, bleach that is a tiny bit stronger then milton baby bottle wash, and it stings like hell
A bleach wash can be use all so, bleach that is a tiny bit stronger then milton baby bottle wash, and it stings like hell southy

1:56pm Mon 19 Nov 12

bobbyboy says...

That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider
Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones.
That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones. bobbyboy

2:16pm Mon 19 Nov 12

Shoong says...

southy wrote:
A bleach wash can be use all so, bleach that is a tiny bit stronger then milton baby bottle wash, and it stings like hell
Says the qualified doctor...
[quote][p][bold]southy[/bold] wrote: A bleach wash can be use all so, bleach that is a tiny bit stronger then milton baby bottle wash, and it stings like hell[/p][/quote]Says the qualified doctor... Shoong

2:31pm Mon 19 Nov 12

VIVERS says...

bobbyboy wrote:
That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider
Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones.
house spiders do bite, i was with my husband who has no fear of spiders what so ever, when he had picked one up to put it outside and yes it bit him so thats crap.
[quote][p][bold]bobbyboy[/bold] wrote: That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones.[/p][/quote]house spiders do bite, i was with my husband who has no fear of spiders what so ever, when he had picked one up to put it outside and yes it bit him so thats crap. VIVERS

3:41pm Mon 19 Nov 12

southy says...

VIVERS wrote:
bobbyboy wrote:
That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider
Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones.
house spiders do bite, i was with my husband who has no fear of spiders what so ever, when he had picked one up to put it outside and yes it bit him so thats crap.
All spiders bite, but its very few (in the uk) that can bite and draw blood.
[quote][p][bold]VIVERS[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]bobbyboy[/bold] wrote: That is not the spider that caused this infection so why publish it and send all those that suffer Arachnophobia into a frenzy this is a common house spider Tegenaria Duellica yes the big one you see run across your carpets they DO NOT BITE HUMANS. If she was in grassland she could have been nipped by a number of other spiders the more likely culprit was Steatoda Bipunctata and she proberly rested he ankle on its head so it would nip in self defence only the infections was caused due to lack of hygiene after the bite the simple use of an aftersting ointment would have done the trick lucky for me i have been bitten a few times on the hands but have suffered no reaction she is one of the unlucky ones.[/p][/quote]house spiders do bite, i was with my husband who has no fear of spiders what so ever, when he had picked one up to put it outside and yes it bit him so thats crap.[/p][/quote]All spiders bite, but its very few (in the uk) that can bite and draw blood. southy

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