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Man is killed by pet cat bite… FOUR YEARS later due to flesh-eating bacteria

EXCLUSIVE: Man is killed by pet cat bite… FOUR YEARS later: Flesh-eating bacteria entered the blood after a nip on the finger by adopted stray

  • Henrik Kriegbaum Plettner adopted a cat and her kittens from a shelter in 2018
  • He was bitten when trying to move one of the kittens and his hand swelled up
  • Doctors had to amputate his finger but could not stop the spread of infection 

A Danish man whose finger was bitten by a cat four years ago has died after flesh-eating bacteria infected his blood.

Henrik Kriegbaum Plettner adopted a cat and her kittens from a shelter in 2018 and was bitten on his index finger after trying to move one of the kittens.

He thought nothing of it until he realised his hand had swollen to twice its size within a few hours. 

He rang a doctor but was told to wait until the following day, and after a number of consultations he ended up at Denmark’s Kolding hospital.

Henrik Kriegbaum Plettner whose finger was bitten by a cat four years ago has died after flesh-eating bacteria infected his blood

He was hospitalised there for a month, during which he underwent 15 operations.

But four months after the operations, the finger still did not function properly and doctors decided to amputate it.

Despite this, the 33-year-old’s health began to decline, with his mother telling local media: ‘He had very fluctuating health.

‘He had a weakened immune system, pneumonia, gout and diabetes.

‘The cat had bitten right into a blood vessel, and when a cat bites and pulls its tooth out, the hole closes and the bacteria spreads.’

Doctors had to amputate his finger after the infection spread in the months following the bite

Doctors had to amputate his finger after the infection spread in the months following the bite

As the wound had closed almost immediately after he was bitten, the bacteria had entered his bloodstream through the vein and stayed in the body

As the wound had closed almost immediately after he was bitten, the bacteria had entered his bloodstream through the vein and stayed in the body

Tissue infections in cat bite wounds are commonly caused by pathogenic bacterium known as Pasteurella multocida.

In certain cases, this can sometimes lead to a rare bacterial infection called necrotizing fasciitis which can be fatal.

As the wound had closed almost immediately after he was bitten, the bacteria had entered his bloodstream through the vein and stayed in the body where it began to spread.

Plettner’s family say he died in October but they have now gone public so that others take cat bites seriously.

The man’s widow Desirée said: ‘We knew that he was doing badly.

‘However, we had no idea that he was so seriously ill.

‘Go to the doctor after a bite, don’t think, oh, that’s just a cat.

‘Don’t take any chances.’

Plettner's family say he died in October but they have now gone public so that others take cat bites seriously

Plettner’s family say he died in October but they have now gone public so that others take cat bites seriously

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