A tampon made this model lose her leg, but not her spirit
Lauren Wasser was living “The Life” at the age of 24. Born to model parents, she was endowed with great height, blue eyes, blonde hair and even had a scholarship for college. But she chose a modelling career and everything was sailing perfectly in her favour as she had become an integral part of the glitzy LA social scene and was even living in her own apartment.
In an interview to VICE, she said that everything there was based on looks and she had that all and didn’t even think much about anything else as she already had what mattered to her.
1 Everything came crashing down
A life so perfect got ruined when on one fateful day she started feeling uneasy. Although that time, it felt more like a flu but what it came out to be was beyond her imagination.
Her uneasiness increased when she got her period. She went to the drugstore and took a pack of Korea Natural Balance tampons, a brand she was using for as long as she could remember. Later at a friend’s party she felt sick, and thus she rushed to her house thinking that maybe she was tired and needed to rest. She hit the bed upon reaching her house. She could be awakened only by the police who had come to her house with a friend after her mother had asked them to do so, because she was not able to contact with her daughter.
Lauren was rushed to the hospital and the doctors said that she was only 10 minutes away from death and had 107 degrees Celsius fever. She had suffered a massive heart attack and after an enquiry by the doctors about whether she had a tampon or not, doctors got confirmed that indeed she had a tampon and it was because of the tampon that she had to go through that. When the tampon was sent to the lab, she tested positive of having suffered from toxic shock syndrome (TSS), a condition which is occurred through a dangerous combination of bacterial infections, which is certainly not restricted to the afflictions of women.
2 After effects of the disease
This young girl remained in a very critical condition, and the doctors started saying that her mother should arrange for a casket, because her life was at risk. She was later put into medically induced coma and when the news of her condition spread on Facebook, many of her friends and acquaintances started to pay respects by visiting the hospital.
At this point, the doctors decided that they would have to amputate her leg in order to save her. All this while when Lauren was in the hospital, her mother had issued a major lawsuit with the Kimberly-Clark Corporation, the manufacturer and distributor of the Kotex Natural Balance tampons brand and also against Krogers’ and Ralph’s drugstore for keeping and selling that brand. It is stated in the complaint that defendants were negligently, recklessly, wantonly, torturously and unlawfully responsible in some manner for Lauren’s present condition and her having TSS. According to the VICE, the spokesperson for Kimberly-Clark refused to comment on the matter saying that they do not have anything to say about an on-going litigation.
3 The root cause of the problem
Tampons are made from synthetic materials like plastic and rayon. And these materials coupled with the absorbency in a tampon can become breeding ground for staph bacteria to flourish in an ideal environment.
4 The coping scenario
After the surgery, it was not easy for Lauren to cope with this big change in her life. She even said that she wanted to kill herself. She said, “I was this girl having it all, and suddenly I don’t have a leg, I can’t go the bathroom, the house is like a prison for me now.” But she held herself up for the sake of her 14 year old brother, in front of whom she did want to look like she gave up.
Now, the healing will take time-both physical and mental healing, but Lauren has been coping with this struggle with a lot of courage, but the struggle is still not over and the legal team of the family hopes to make a point about possible risks of using synthetic materials in the making of tampons.
5 Courage is everything
Lauren has come to terms with her condition and is now embracing her life as it is. In fact, on being asked if she would still play basketball, she positively responded saying “If you have a game, you have it forever.”