A mother in Sussex, England, ended up in a coma after an insect bite left her with blood poisoning.
Sharon Vos-Arnold, 53, was working in her garden with her son, 29-year-old Ryan, when she was bitten on the hand by an insect.
A couple of days after the bite, Vos-Arnold was rushed to the hospital with a high fever, blistering skin and failing kidneys.
“My blood pressure was really low, I had a high heart rate,” she said. “I started to bleed because my kidneys had stopped working and I was having trouble breathing."
Once at the hospital, Vos-Arnold was diagnosed with sepsis and multiple organ failure. She was subsequently put into an induced coma and placed on life support.
The coma lasted for a week, and she was on dialysis for another four to five days until she finally began to recover.
“I gradually became aware that my family were around me but all I thought was that it was nice to see them,” she said. “I was completely oblivious to how ill I was. I had no idea that they had been by my bedside for almost two weeks. I now realize that I nearly died.”
A full recovery from the life-threatening sepsis, Vos-Arnold said, could take up to two years.
“I just want to raise awareness of just how dangerous this infection can be and how random it is,” she said. “I've heard that people have developed sepsis through being scratched by brambles. It is so important that people in general are aware and that hospital staff know about it. I was so lucky that the team at the hospital picked up on it straight away.”