Posted Thursday, May 10, 2012, at 3:50 PM
Giving us all another reason to distrust homemade zip lines, a Georgia woman has had her leg amputated after contracting a rare flesh-eating bacteria from a zip line-related injury.
Aimee Copeland, a master’s student at the University of West Georgia, is in critical condition in Augusta, Ga., where what started as cut resulted in the amputation of her left leg at the hip. Copeland was using a homemade zip line with her friends on the Little Tallapoosa River. When the line snapped, she fell and cut her leg. Doctors believe the common bacteria—Aeromonas hydrophila—entered her body through the wound.
The resulting infection, called necrotizing fasciitis, is described as rare, but dramatic. It can spread extremely quickly, and often results in loss of limbs or life. Aimee may still have her hands and right foot amputated due to poor circulation. And if you’re still thinking about homemade zip-lining, just remember: Necrotizing fasciitis photos make anti-smoking ads look like child's play.