11-Year-Old Florida Boy Dies After Getting Infected by a Flesh-Eating Bacteria

Jesse Brown, 11, white boy, brown hair with hat

Jesse Brown was running on a treadmill when he twisted his ankle and got infected by the same bacteria that causes strep throat.

An 11-year-old boy from Florida died after getting infected by a flesh-eating bacteria.

Jesse Brown, 11, an otherwise healthy young boy, twisted his ankle while on the treadmill and got a scratch that possibly allowed an infection to spread, eventually killing him, FOX 35 reported.

Brown fell victim to a bacteria called Strep A, which infected his leg and progressed into a flesh-eating bacteria, according to his family. 

"His whole leg was covered in like splotchy, purply, red, almost like bruises," Megan Brown, the boy’s cousin told FOX 35.

Group-A strep is the same bacteria that causes strep throat, scarlet fever and other infections, according to the Centers for Disease Control. 

Although the majority of instances are not as serious, Dr. Candice Jones, an Orlando pediatrician, told Fox 35 it can result in a secondary infection like flesh-eating sickness in rare cases. Swelling, redness, an unpleasant odor, and fever are indicators to watch out for, she told the outlet.

The bacteria traveled through his body and eventually caused his brain to swell, after which he was pronounced brain-dead, according to the family’s GoFundMe. 

“Jesse was kind and compassionate, looked out for others, adventurous, and truly an amazing friend and classmate,” his school said on a fundraising page. “Jesse will be missed incredibly in so many ways, but will remain in our hearts forever.”

Hospital staff where Brown was seen said he was the third case just this month, according to Florida Representative Anna V. Eskamani.

"They said that because he rolled his ankle, that that’s likely where the infection attacked it. Because it was already weak," Jesse’s cousin told FOX 35.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, infections caused by Group A Strep decreased during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic but are now rebounding to pre-pandemic levels. 

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