Flesh-eating bacteria victim says she contracted infection from Tennessee nail salon

A Tennessee woman claims a trip to a Knoxville nail salon left her with a rare, potentially deadly infection – necrotizing fasciitis, aka flesh-eating bacteria.


According to WBIR-TV, Jayne Sharp, of Knoxville, said she visited Jazzy Nail Bar for a manicure in the spring.

"While I was there, I got stuck on my thumb, and I went, 'Ouch,'" she told the station.

Just hours after leaving the salon, Sharp noticed that her thumb had begun to swell and throb, she told WZTV. She also developed "flu-like symptoms," she said.

At the urging of her daughter, a registered nurse, Sharp went to the doctor's office.

"I had a red streak that the NP marked with a magic marker and it extended to my wrist by the next morning," Sharp told WTVF, adding that it eventually spread to her elbow.

The nurse practitioner, Nikki Brown of Summit Medical Group, later called a sleeping Sharp to ask about the streak, WBIR reported. When Sharp described how far the wound had spread, Brown instructed her to go to the hospital right away.

Doctors, who diagnosed Sharp with necrotizing fasciitis, said Brown's phone call likely saved her patient's life, WBIR reported. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the infection "spreads quickly in the body," typically after entering someone's system through an open wound.

Now, several months and three surgeries later, Sharp's thumb and two of her fingers remain numb, she told WZTV. She's also missing part of her thumb, WBIR reported.

Sharp added that she is filing a lawsuit against Jazzy Nail Bar, which said it follows state cleaning requirements and passed an inspection shortly after Sharp's complaint, according to WBIR. The state also confirmed that the salon passed recent inspections.

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