A former gymnast is fighting for her life after what she thought to be the flu turned out to be toxic shock syndrome. She is now said to be awake after multiple emergency surgeries to cut off some of her limbs.
The family of 30-year-old Anna Norquist is asking for continued prayers and support amid the former gymnast’s ongoing battle with toxic shock syndrome. She was initially admitted to St. Joseph Health System Mishawaka Medical Center when she thought she was suffering from the flu. However, doctors found that she was actually suffering from streptococcus A infection when she was transferred to the University Health Methodist Hospital where she later developed toxic shock syndrome.
According to her brother Patrick Norquist, Anna has since undergone at least nine surgeries, in which doctors amputated her right arm and left leg. Still, doctors say that Anna might have to undergo even more surgeries, and that it could still be up to a year before she can go home after rehabilitation and therapy.
Although toxic shock syndrome is typically linked to tampon use, that is not the case for Anna. In fact, it is still unclear where she got the infection from and where it entered her body. So far, she is now said to be awake and having conversations, which her family considers a miracle after the ordeal that she went through, and after days of not even knowing whether she will survive.
“Whatever she faces, we, her family, will support her as best we can, but, both now and over the long term, we will need help from all her friends, our friends and all loving and generous strangers,” Patrick Norquist said in the family’s GoFundMe page..
Toxic Shock Syndrome
Toxic shock syndrome is an infection typically caused by streptococcus or staphylococcus bacteria. While it has been often linked with the use of tampons, anyone can actually get toxic shock syndrome, particularly those with skin wounds or those who had surgery.
Symptoms of toxic shock syndrome may include sudden high fever, vomiting, low blood pressure, rash on the soles and palms, confusion, muscle aches, and seizures. Anyone who experiences these symptoms must immediately seek medical attention, as toxic shock syndrome can progress rapidly and even cause death.