Woman: I got staph infection while swimming in Gulf

GALVESTON, TX (KTRK) -- A Houston woman is warning others after she says she contracted a dangerous staph infection while swimming in Galveston.

"I went to the doctor and I said, 'Oh God, what's wrong with me? What is this horrific stuff all over my body?' She came over, she touched it, and she said, 'Have you been to Galveston lately?'" said Leta Pritchard.

Pritchard has been swimming on Galveston beaches for her whole life. This is the first time she says she's gotten a staph infection, which is caused by bacteria in the water.

"If you have an open skin wound, I would not recommend getting into the water," said Emergency Medicine physician, Dr. Neil Wingkun.

Dr. Wingkun says staph infections can be deadly if your immune system is already compromised.

"So people who have taken steroids, chemotherapy, have HIV, as well as people who have been in the hospital recently or had recent antibiotic use," Dr. Wingkun said.

If you think you may have contracted a staph infection, contact your doctor immediately.
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