Could your child get sick trying on shoes?

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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — A little girl contracted a sometimes deadly skin infection by trying on shoes barefoot and now many are wondering, could it happen to my child?

The four-year-old in the UK developed sepsis one day after trying on shoes with no socks.

There was bacteria in the shoes, which entered her body through an open wound, a cut or bug bite on her foot.

Dr. Saghana Chakrabortty with Bon Secours says this is very rare.

“It’s like three in a million to maybe a hundred in a million (chance),” he said.

Those most at risk have compromised immune systems, Chakrabortty says.

“People who are getting treatment with chemo and people who are HIV untreated, diabetics.”

He also said infections happen most often in feet and hands, where there’s less blood supply. But the doctor says sometimes people with no particular risk factor do get sick. 

“They just happen to be in the bad place at the wrong time,” Dr. Chakrabortty said.

To protect yourself he advises:  wash any cuts or sores with soap and water, keep them covered and always wear socks when trying on shoes as an extra barrier to bacteria.

Doctors thought they would have to operate on the little girl who got infected (she could have lost her leg), but they were able to save it and her life with five days of IV antibiotics.

She has been released under careful observation.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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