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WDAY: The News Leader

Published March 07, 2012, 07:00 PM

Dalton woman battling Pseudomonas bacterial infection

Dalton, MN (WDAY TV) - A simple bug-bite has turned into a nightmare for a Dalton volunteer firefighter. Tara Lindquist is battling a debilitating skin condition.

A simple bug-bite has turned into a nightmare for a Dalton volunteer firefighter. Tara Lindquist is battling a debilitating skin condition.

It was just like any other August day back in 2009. Tara Lindquist was doing yard work when all of a sudden her left ankle started to itch.

Tara Lindquist – Suffers from Pseudomonas: “Didn't think too much of it. I looked down and here I had a tick bite.”

Over time, the infection got worse, and after months of doctors’ visits, Lindquist learned that a bacteria called pseudomonas entered her system through the bite wound.

Tara Lindquist: “It means it's eating the skin, nerves and muscles. It's like okay what am I looking at here? Is it going to eat through my bone am I gonna end up with an amputated leg, am I gonna lose my life?

The infection spread to both legs.

Tara Lindquist: “About the only way I can describe it is like a constant branding iron and nothing will alleviate the pain.”

Lindquist has undergone surgery and there will be more to come. In the meantime, she can no longer work construction and is limited to light work as volunteer firefighter.

Tara Lindquist: “Not being able to work and support my family it's depressing. I'm basically at risk of losing everything I have, my house, my truck everything I've worked so hard for.”

Right now, Tara is trying to keep the wounds clean so they'll heal and she can get back to a normal life.

A benefit for the Lindquists will be held this Saturday from 4-8 PM at the Dalton Community Center. There will be a spaghetti feed, bake sale and silent auction.

Tara was born with a weak immune system, making her more susceptible to pseudomonas. This bacterium is harmful to people of all ages, particularly babies and the elderly.

It's a moisture loving bacteria, commonly found in hospitals and spas. It can also be found in homes, where water is around.

Pseudonomas can cause skin infections. It can also live on open wounds and prevent healing. It can be cured by keeping wounds clean and through antibiotics.

Dr. Dubert Guerrero – Sanford Health: “Well, any kind of bacteria in the wound would prevent the wound from healing better and that's why it has to be really clean, cared of really well.”

Burn patients are also at risk for pseudomonas.

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