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Using menstrual cup for too long causes woman to lose feet, parts of fingers

A French woman lost her feet and parts of her fingers were amputated after she used a menstrual cup for too long which led to toxic shock syndrome.

Using menstrual cup for too long causes woman to lose feet, parts of fingers
Paris, First Published Jan 22, 2020, 2:38 PM IST
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Paris: Using the menstrual cup for a long time can land you in trouble. 

A woman named Sandrine Graneau in France had her feet and parts of her fingers amputated after developing toxic shock syndrome from using a menstrual cup for too long.

The life-threatening but rare condition is caused by bacteria entering the body and releasing harmful toxins due to various reasons. One of them can be when a menstrual product, like a tampon or cup, is used for too long.

36-year-old Sandrine Graneau from Loire-Atlantique on the western coast of France recalled the day she fell ill to the Le Parisien newspaper. She had cooked dinner for her children when a light pain in her stomach became intense.

The report in the newspaper stated that an emergency doctor who visited Graneau at her home diagnosed her with kidney stones. When he came back the next day, her blood pressure had dropped so low that she was rushed to hospital.

Soon, a doctor in the emergency room diagnosed her with toxic shock syndrome after her skin turned a vermillion red. Graneau stated the bacteria had let off toxins which had spread to her kidneys, lungs, and liver.

Graneau spent the next three weeks recovering in intensive care. Surgeons had to amputate 18 bones out of her hand but were able to save one in each finger.

Following her ordeal, Graneau founded Dans Mes Baskets, or In My Sneakers, an organization that provides emotional and financial support to, and raise awareness of, people who have had amputations as a result of toxic shock syndrome.

Although it is often associated with the use of menstrual products, anyone can develop the condition. Symptoms, which can escalate quickly, include a high temperature, as well as flu-like symptoms including a headache, a sore throat and cough, feeling tired and cold, and aches in the body. The condition can also cause a person to feel sick, have diarrhoea, and a rash across the body which resembles a sunburn.

The person's lips, tongue, and the white of their eyes may turn bright red. The patient may also faint or experience dizziness, struggle to breathe, and feel confused. In some cases, the individual may have a wound where the bacteria entered the body which may not appear to be infected.

Health officials at the UK's NHS stated that although it is unlikely such symptoms are caused by toxic shock syndrome, they "should not be ignored."

Treatments include antibiotics, as well as fluids to help stop a person from becoming dehydrated or suffering organ damage, and drugs to return blood pressure to normal. In the US, between 0.8 to 3.4 people per 100,000 develop the condition. 

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