(CNN) – A holiday weekend means more time at the beach. Cases of Vibrio commonly known as flesh eating bacteria have made some beach goers more aware. Vibrio is contracted through an open wound or ingested through raw seafood.
Doctor John Butler with memorial Hermann southwest hospital recommends wearing water shoes avoid the water if you have a cut if you get a cut in the water address it immediately with soap antibiotic ointment and a waterproof band aid. Watch it carefully in the days to come for redness or swelling and see a doctor if it gets worse.
Doctor Butler explained, “I do think it’s safe to go out into the water particularly going into the gulf and enjoy yourself but I think you need some basic common sense preventative measures.”
Those with a compromised weakened immune systems are more at risk. Cases of losing limbs or life are rare.
Lauren Sieg, a frequent beach visitor, said, “What a lot of people don’t seem to understand is Vibrio is present in salt and brackish water anywhere you go. So if you’ve ever been to the Gulf of Mexico or either coast of the U.S. you’ve probably been exposed to this bacteria and you probably didn’t have negative reaction.
The Galveston county health district says there have only been two confirmed cases so far here this year compared to the past three years.
The Texas beach watch advisory does not include Vibrio. Swim sites are test for enterococcus, a bacteria common in flood water which spikes after a heavy rain. An advisory is issued if it’s above EPA levels for safe swimming but the beaches aren’t closed.