Woman’s rare strep throat strain leads to amputation of fingers, toes

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Credit: Robert Linder/Freeimages

A Tennessee woman thought she just had a sore throat, but she ended up almost losing her life.

Shelby Smith began having convulsions and went into septic shock, she told WATE. She was rushed by ambulance to the hospital, where her major organs began to fail and she was placed in a medically induced coma for a week.

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When Smith awoke, she discovered that some of her fingers and toes had turned black. Doctors discovered that Smith had a rare form of strep throat, and the medication she was given to keep her vital organs alive drew the blood supply from her extremities. Smith lost multiple toes and fingers.

Smith doesn't have health insurance and she and her fiance are considering starting a GoFundMe campaign to help pay for medical expenses from her month-long hospital stay.

Smith's case made the news after a man in Michigan was facing a quadruple amputation after his strep throat infection traveled to his stomach.