Woman battling flesh-eating bacterial infection remains in critical condition

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SLIPPERY ROCK, Pa. —

A 56-year-old Slippery Rock woman remains hospitalized in critical condition as she battles a flesh-eating bacterial infection.

Cheri McClymonds is connected to a ventilator in the intensive care unit at Allegheny General Hospital. She was diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis, a flesh-eating infection that can destroy muscles, skin and tissue.

McClymonds’ best friend, Jody Spisak, who also works with her at the Butler Eagle, said they’re not sure how McClymonds acquired the infection.

“It happened overnight. One minute she was fine, and the next, she was in the hospital,” Spisak said.

Family and friends said McClymonds didn’t know she was sick, and recently started seeing a doctor for pain in her leg. She then visited a physician who advised her to go to the hospital immediately.

She’s had four surgeries in the past week, Spisak said, but those close to her remain optimistic.

“She’s a great gal. She’s going to pull through this. She’s a tough cookie,” Spisak said.

Experts said necrotizing fasciitis affects about 600 people per year. It can be contracted from minor cuts, insect bites or abrasions.