Type of disease: Rare conditions
Necrotizing fasciitis is a serious bacterial infection of the skin, subcutaneous tissue (tissue just beneath the skin) and fascia. The infection can be sudden and fast-spreading. The bacteria involved enters the body through an external injury and attacks the surrounding tissues, eventually causing them to die. Early signs include flu-like symptoms and redness or pain around the infection site, followed by very high fever, severe pain, swelling and blistering. If the infection is not treated promptly, it may cause multiple organ failure and death. Treatment typically includes intravenous antibiotics; surgery to remove infected and dead tissue; hyperbaric oxygen therapy; and intravenous immune globulin therapy. Source: Genetic and Rare Diseases Information Center (GARD), supported by ORDR-NCATS and NHGRI.