BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Dozens of parents have been sounding off on social media after their kids started breaking out in sores after swimming in area lakes.
Lewis Smith Lake is now another body of water where parents said their kids are catching “staph infection.”
What started off as a sore nose ended in sores all over 4-year-old Kaden Glasco’s body after swimming in Smith Lake.
“It just started oozing like goo and stuff and it just looked really red and nasty and then sores started popping up all over his body,” his mother, Courtney Glasco, said.
This complaint about Smith Lake comes just after people were complaining about painful sores after swimming in Lake Logan Martin.
Dr. Darrel Dawkins says staph infection is pretty well contained, but the younger the child, the higher the risk.
“The younger the child, the more potential you can have problems and when we get into the blood stream that is when we get into a critical situation,” said Dawkins.
Glasco’s infection didn’t enter his blood stream, but he did have sores everywhere. His pediatrician linked his staph outbreak to Smith Lake.
“She confirmed that it was impetigo that he got swimming in the lake. I’m not putting my kids back in the lake,” said Glasco.
The Alabama Department of Environmental Management told WIAT 42 that they only test Smith Lake for e-coli, and that goes for all the other lakes in Alabama as well. With the recent fluctuation in weather, there is a strong possibility that lakes can back up with waste which in turn breeds bacteria.
“It would be nice if they put warnings out there and warned people. Whatever he touched we had to clean it to make sure no one else got it because it was very contagious,” Glasco said.
The risk you run swimming in a lake gives “swim at your own risk” a whole new meaning. According to Dawkins, who has treated a few kids for staph this summer, the healing process can be lengthy and painful.
“The thing that we have to do them is relieve the pressure and size it, cut it with a needle and drain it and sometimes we have to leave something in there to keep it open so that it will continue to drain,” Dawkins said.
WIAT 42 also reached out to the Alabama Department of Public Health, but did not hear back.
Dawkins suggests Clorox baths for kids that have had this infection more than once, and also to not swim in any of these lakes if you have an open sore.
Copyright 2015 WIAT 42 News