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Father killed by flesh-eating bug triggered by small cut to his elbow

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A father-of-two died after becoming infected by a flesh-eating bug from a small cut on his elbow.

IT worker Vinod Kumar, 37, was the 'fittest he had ever been' before he sustained the cut in a fall, after feeling dizzy and ill with flu-like symptoms.

Five days after he fell, doctors discovered he had necrotising fasciitis, a flesh-eating bug which rapidly infects the soft tissue, and can kill in a matter of hours.

Mr Kumar, of Foxhills Road, Spring Hill, Wolverhampton died just hours after doctors discovered he had the condition.

Giving evidence at his inquest at Black Country Coroners Court, his devastated wife Nishi said: "He was a loving husband and father.

"He had been going to the gym a lot. He was probably the fittest he had been.

"We need to know why it took so long to diagnose him. We need answers."

On August 4 Mr Kumar went to work but arrived home early due to feeling unwell. He described to his wife that he had flu-like symptoms.

He saw his GP the following day, who said that it looked as though he was suffering from a viral infection. The doctor recommended he keep taking pain relief and drinking plenty of fluids.

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Mr Kumar then had his fall in which he grazed his right elbow. By the following Monday his arms were visibly swollen. He was taken to New Cross Hospital A&E on August 9 in the evening where a triage nurse treated as a trauma patient. He remained at the hospital and was later he was seen by a clinician due to his pain becoming more intense.

An MRI scan was scheduled for 2pm on August 10.

He deteriorated rapidly and was transferred to the critical care unit. It became clear that he had a soft tissue infection. He died at around 5pm from multiple organ failure as a result of necrotising fasciitis brought on by a fall.

Due to the rarity of the disease and the difficulty in diagnosing it, Black Country Senior Coroner Zafar Siddique delivered a verdict of accidental death.

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