Man dies after eating oysters with flesh-eating bacteria

A US man has died after contracting a virus from a flesh-eating bacteria from eating raw oysters.

According to health officials, the 71-year-old man developed an infection from the Vibrio vulnificus bacteria when he ate the delicacy at a restaurant in Sarosota, Florida, on July 8.

He died two days after eating the oysters, Fox 13 reported.

“We have an individual that consumed some raw oysters and to the best of our knowledge had no exposure to salt water, became severely ill, and passed away,” Michael Drennon, Disease Intervention Services Program Manager at the Sarasota County Health Dept, said.

Florida man dies from virus after eating raw oysters
The 71-year-old died just two days after eating the oysters. Source: Getty, file.

The deadly bacteria is found in salt water while the risk of coming into contact with bacteria increases when consuming raw or undercooked shell fish.

“We tell everybody regardless of age or immune status that they should avoid eating raw or undercooked shell fish or seafood or avoid or being in the salt water when they have an open wound or lesion on their body,” Drennon said.

Drennon said death from the bacteria is rare and symptoms normally involve diarrhea and vomiting, which can escalate quickly to hospitilisation.

Health officials are investigating the death and are actively liaising with the restaurant over the cause.