To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Woman urges people to recognise sepsis symptoms after losing her fingertips and legs

Woman urges people to recognise sepsis symptoms after losing her fingertips and legs

Katy Grainger, 55, had to have her legs and fingertips amputated after becoming ill in 2018

A woman had her fingertips and legs amputated after being diagnosed with sepsis, a life-threatening medical emergency.

Katy Grainger, 55, said she was ‘really health conscious and very healthy’ when she unexpectedly got sick in 2018.

After visiting her children in California, she returned from the trip and noticed a purple bump on her right thumb that ‘seemed to be oozing a little bit,’ she explained in an article for Today.

Katy stopped by a clinic and picked up an antibiotic ‘to be safe’. She was ‘very tired’ and went to bed and slept the entire day.

Katy is warning people about the symptoms of sepsis.

When she woke up Katy ‘felt this urgency that I had to get help’. With her husband out of town and not wanting to call an ambulance, Katy asked a friend to take her to the hospital. When the friend arrived at her house, Katy was ‘almost unresponsive’.

“I was crying and saying my hands and feet were on fire. My blood pressure was 50/30, which is insanely low. My body went haywire,” she explained.

“My kidneys and my lungs were failing. My hands and feet became totally purple - the first signs that I was getting disseminated intravascular coagulation, or tiny blood clots in my limbs. It was very scary to my family."

Katy was placed in a drug-induced coma.

Katy was placed in a drug-induced coma and slept through the first week of her sepsis ordeal. She was placed in a hyperbaric chamber to hyper oxygenate her body for two hours every day in a bid to save her hands and feet. Katy called this a ‘small miracle’ as her hands came ‘back to life’ but her fingertips ‘were clearly dead’.

She said: “I had severe gangrene. They were shrivelled up, hard and dry. They almost seemed like charcoal. Seven had to be amputated.”

Doctors were unable to save her feet and her legs had to be amputated below the knee.

Katy noticed a purple mark on her thumb.

Katy now wants to educate people on the symptoms of sepsis. The Sepsis Alliance uses the acronym 'TIME' to help people remember the signs to look out for.

T: Temperature - higher or lower than normal.

I: Infection - may have signs and symptoms of an infection.

M: Mental decline - confused, sleepy, difficult to rouse.

E: Extremely ill - severe pain, discomfort, shortness of breath.

Katy has learned how to use prosthetic limbs and can ride a bike and drive. She’s also learned how to snowboard and wakesurf.

Sepsis - which is sometimes called septicaemia or blood poisoning - is a life-threatening reaction to an infection and it happens when your immune system overreacts to an infection and starts to damage your body’s own organs and tissues. If you find yourself experiencing these symptoms, you should call 999 or go to A&E.

Featured Image Credit: Instagram/katysepsisamputee

Topics: Health, News