Man's limbs amputated after being licked by dog

Ben Davidson
August 2, 2018

In just a few days, the bacteria spread and Manteufel was fighting for his life.

A GoFundMe page has been set up by a family friend to raise funds for prosthetic legs and plastic surgery on Greg's nose. Doctors were forced to amputate his legs through the kneecap, and damage to his hands necessitates amputation of fingers.

Doctors snapped into action, first amputating both feet to stop the infection from spreading.

Greg was told the infection was likely transmitted via a lick from his own dog.

"This infection in his blood that triggered a very severe response on his body", said infectious disease specialist Dr. Silvia Munoz-Price.

That response caused Greg Manteufel's blood pressure to drop and the circulation in his limbs to decrease rapidly.

"It hit him with a vengeance".

'Just bruising all over him.

"He loves riding his Harley", Manteufel's wife, Dawn Manteufel, said.

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Capnocytophaga Canimorsus, a bacterial pathogen, is typically found in the saliva of cats and dogs. The people most at risk for this infection are those with weakened immune systems, according to the CDC.

But in exceedingly rare circumstances, that lick can lead to a risky and potentially lethal infection from a common bacteria.

Doctors said Greg's case is simply a fluke. Up to 74 percent of dogs and 57 percent of cats have Capnocytophaga, but the bacteria don't cause illness in dogs and cats, the CDC says. She said she doesn't know which dog was carrying the bacteria that attacked her husband.

Dr. Bruce Farber, chief of infectious diseases at North Shore University Hospital and Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New Hyde Park, New York, told CBS News at the time that physicians have known about this bacteria for decades.

According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the bacteria is found in the saliva of healthy dogs and cats.

A case report published by the peer-reviewed medical journal BMJ recounted the story of an elderly woman who may have been licked by her household pet and later suffered sepsis and organ failure.

"I would stress that such reactions are very, very rare, and shouldn't prevent us from having close contact with pets", Ho said in a piece for The Conversation.

Approximately 30% of people who do get infected die, which is why it's essential to see a doctor if you are bitten by an animal.

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