‘I’d never seen anything like it’

A outing of a lifetime incited into a calamity for this couple.

THE outing of a lifetime incited into a calamity for a integrate — after one of them engaged a flesh-eating bug that ate his leg.

Ben Whiteside and partner Anneka Shally, from a UK, had been training in Hong Kong and motionless to spin off their outing by backpacking around Asia.

But a journey incited to fear after Ben was pounded by a lethal bug necrotising fasciitis, that ate divided during his strength and bone.


The calamity began during a two-trek to Tiger Leaping Gorge in China’s Yunnan Province where Ben, from Belfast, grazed his left knee.

A few days after a integrate were on a 14-hour train float to Laos when Ben complained that a pain in his knee was worsening.

Ben and Anneka had been training in Hong Kong.

Ben and Anneka had been training in Hong Kong.Source:Supplied

As shortly as they arrived in Luang Prabang, a city in a north of a country, Ben saw a alloy who pronounced a graze on his knee was putrescent and sent him home with antibiotics.

The following day, Ben woke adult queasiness and pang from a high temperature.

Anneka, 24, explained: “I don’t know accurately what his heat was, as we had no thermometer, yet he was hot and unequivocally sweaty.

“I left him to rest, yet a day after he was still being sick. We suspicion he was reacting to a antibiotics.”

They had motionless to spin off their outing by backpacking around Asia.

They had motionless to spin off their outing by backpacking around Asia.Source:Supplied

The disturbed integrate returned to a alloy who told them a infection was “controlled” and claimed a queasiness was down to a hitch of food poisoning.

Anneka said: “We took his word for it. Ben had had a dodgy-tasting milkshake in a hotel a integrate of mornings before, so we suspicion maybe it was bad milk.”

The following day, a 25-year-old felt improved and a queasiness had stopped so Anneka left him to rest for a few hours and went out.

But when she returned things had taken a spin for a worse.

He scarcely mislaid his leg.

He scarcely mislaid his leg.Source:Supplied

She revealed: “The tip of Ben’s left thigh had distended up, while his knee seemed to have left behind to normal.

“Rather than spread, a infection had changed adult a leg — we knew it was vicious then.”

The span went to a internal sanatorium but, after an X Ray, they fobbed him off with vitamin supplements to understanding with a sickness.

“We knew it was an infection,” pronounced Anneka. “And they usually weren’t traffic with it. Nobody seemed to know what they were doing. It was terrifying.”

They went behind to their hostel, yet during 4am a following morning, Ben woke adult in agonizing pain, observant he could feel something on a behind of his leg.

Shining a light of her mobile phone on his leg, Anneka pronounced what she saw was like something out of a fear film.

The flesh-eating bug ate his leg.

The flesh-eating bug ate his leg.Source:Supplied

She recalled: “The whole skin on that thigh was purple and black with this large draining wound in a middle. It was horrific.

“But we attempted to keep calm, for Ben’s sake. It was a center of a night, too — what could we do?”

Anneka texted her cousin Siobhan Glavy, a alloy in Dublin, who told her he had a nasty infection and indispensable intravenous antibiotics immediately.

By a morning, a bruising on his leg had widespread serve adult his thigh and he couldn’t travel so a integrate took a tuktuk — a tiny open automobile — to hospital.

Ben was given a bed with no bedsheets or pillow, bending adult to intravenous antibiotics and diagnosed with cellulitis of a leg.

At home, Ben’s silent Angela, conference her son was ill, had requisitioned a integrate into a intelligent hotel.

As they couldn’t use a room, a hotel’s manager incited adult during a sanatorium with purify bedding and pillows to make his stay some-more comfortable.

“I was so overwhelmed by that,” Anneka said. “I had nobody else during that point, it was usually so terrifying.

“She suggested me to get him to Bangkok, as a medical caring there in Laos was too behind.

“The IV season seemed to have slowed a infection down, yet it was still spreading. I’d never seen anything like it.

“So we called Angela and told her we had to get Ben to Bangkok quick.”

Bangkok Hospital organised to have Ben flown on a blurb airline yet clearway issues meant a integrate had to wait another 24 hours, with Ben’s leg removing worse with each flitting hour.

And doctors personally told Anneka that he would mislay his leg.

They arrived during a sanatorium in a Thai collateral on Nov 21 and were met by Angela, who had flown from Belfast to be with them.

“They did an MRI indicate and whisked Ben off to medicine flattering most immediately”, pronounced Anneka.

Doctors had small time to explain how serious a condition was yet thereafter they explained he had engaged a singular strength eating illness necrotising fasciitis.

If he hadn’t had surgery, he would have been passed within days.

Hes anticipating to be home for Christmas.

He’s anticipating to be home for Christmas.Source:Supplied

The infection had widespread to his kidneys, yet usually just, so they hoped it could be burning out with antibiotics.

He also had serious sepsis, where a whole physique creates an inflammatory response to infection, that can infer fatal.

After a operation, on Nov 22, a surgeon showed a integrate cinema of a operation.

“It was grim, we didn’t demeanour during some of them,” Anneka said. “It was all open wounds, and he showed us where all a passed hankie had been removed.

“The alloy pronounced Ben would substantially be fine as he was immature and strong, yet his condition was critical.”

Ben responded good to diagnosis and, after 4 days, his kidneys were transparent and a sepsis gone.

After 13 some-more days he was good adequate to be flown home, yet a bug had left his leg exceedingly shop-worn as a germ had eaten right down to a bone.

He has given undergone 7 operations to mislay a passed hankie and is now in Belfast’s Ulster Hospital after a array of skin grafts.

Now he’s anticipating to lapse home for Christmas.

Anneka said: “Considering how ill he was, Ben rallied unequivocally well. He was incredible.

“The worse partial for both of us was those few days in Laos since were totally in a dark.

“A alloy told me, divided from Ben, that in Bangkok they would substantially have to mislay his leg. He was usually observant what we knew Ben and we were both thinking, yet — even if we didn’t contend it.”

In a serve blow, a integrate were landed with a £30,000 medical check since they didn’t have medical insurance.

They have now lifted over £23,000 by as fundraising page.

A GoFundMe page to assistance with Ben’s medical costs has lifted over £23k to date, and is during Gofundme.com/benwhiteside.

This story creatively seemed on TheSun.

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