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Tags: israel | hamas | idf | soldiers | superbugs | fungal infection

IDF Soldier Dies From Fungal Superbug Infection

By    |   Tuesday, 26 December 2023 01:09 PM EST

An Israel Defense Forces soldier has died after contracting a multidrug-resistant fungal infection while fighting in Gaza, according to Israeli media reports.

The Times of Israel reported Tuesday that the source of the fungus is believed to be ground soil that was contaminated with sewage in the wake of airstrikes by Israeli forces.

The soldier, who was not identified, was one of approximately 10 who were being treated in Israel for the same fungus. He was reportedly brought to Assuta Ashdod Medical Center two weeks ago with severe injuries to his limbs after clashes with Hamas fighters in the Gaza Strip.

He was the first to succumb to the illness.

"Some of the wounded in the Gaza Strip have complex infections that are a result of the field conditions,” professor Eyal Leshem, a specialist in infectious disease units at Sheba Medical Center, told N12. “When there is an injury in the field, bacteria and fungi originating from the soil may appear. We have known about these infections for many years. The American forces operating in Iraq and Afghanistan also reported similar infections."

"The soil is not sterile, but contains bacteria, molds, and fungi,” Leshem continued. "In the case of open wounds, there is a fear that these factors will penetrate and contaminate the wound.

"Some of the injuries are so severe that, despite the best treatment, we sometimes fail to heal them. It is important to emphasize in order to reassure the worried parents: this is not a new phenomenon that is characteristic of the Gaza Strip, but a known problem that characterizes combat conditions in the field."

The commissioner general of the United Nations’ agency for Palestinian refugees said in late October that the situation on the ground in Gaza was dire.

“As we speak, people in Gaza are dying, basic services are crumbling,” Philippe Lazzarini said, according to the BBC, adding that food and water supplies were dwindling and streets in the area were “overflowing with sewage.”

"Gaza is on the brink of a massive health hazard and the risk of diseases are looming," Lazzarini said.

Some of the hostages who were released during the brief cease-fire between the IDF and Hamas in November reportedly had similar infections.

"Among the abductees who returned, we know of several cases of invasive infections and serious injuries," professor Hagai Levin told N12. "Abductees who were injured on Oct. 7 and treated in poor conditions suffered from infections.

"Therefore, we are very worried about contaminated injuries of abductees who have not yet been released, which sharpens the understanding that the abductees need to be released and brought to Israel for treatment as soon as possible."

Nicole Wells

Nicole Wells, a Newsmax general assignment reporter covers news, politics, and culture. She is a National Newspaper Association award-winning journalist.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


Newsfront
An Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldier has died after contracting a multidrug-resistant fungal infection while fighting in Gaza, according to Israeli media reports. The Times of Israel reported Tuesday that the source of the fungus is believed to be ground soil that was...
israel, hamas, idf, soldiers, superbugs, fungal infection
445
2023-09-26
Tuesday, 26 December 2023 01:09 PM
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