Many of us have bitten our nails at one point or another in our lives. But for 28-year-old dad-of-two Luke Hanoman from Merseyside, England, the nervous habit nearly killed him.
“I used to bite my nails all the time. It was a nervous thing,” Hanoman said, recalling the incident. “And one day I bit the skin down the side of my nail. It hurt a bit but I didn’t think anything of it.”
“I was in work throughout the week and started to get flu-like symptoms which were gradually getting worse.”
That’s when his mother decided to call the U.K. medical helpline NHS 111.
“My mom raced me down to the hospital,” Hanoman said. “The next thing I knew I was on a stretcher with a drip in my arm. It was a bit of a mad one.”
At the hospital, Hanoman was immediately put on an IV. Then he was diagnosed with sepsis, a serious complication of an infection that causes the body to attack its vital organs. If not treated quickly, it can result in organ failure and even death.
Fortunately, Hanoman got medical help just in time. After being admitted to the hospital, he was kept under close observation for four days. Doctors have said that he is “lucky to be alive.”
“Eventually, they got to the infection in my finger and all of this puss came out. I’ve never seen so much puss before,” Hanoman, who is a dad to two sons aged five and six, said.
“I knew nothing about sepsis before this. I just thought I had a high temperature and maybe a virus,” he added. “I had no idea what sepsis was and I had no idea about the symptoms to look out for. There needs to be a lot more awareness.” Now he’s sharing his story to do just that.
“It’s really important for us to try and raise awareness of an illness that kills so many people, yet still lacks public awareness,” sad Shamir Patel, founder and pharmacist at Chemist-4-U.com. “Luke didn’t know about the symptoms, but thankfully he received help in time.”
Symptoms of the potentially deadly condition include dizziness, diarrhea, and mottled, blush, or pale skin. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, it’s important to visit your doctor as soon as possible.