She knew something was wrong as soon as she got to work – she felt feverish and nauseous and when she went to try to freshen up in the bathroom she fainted. Confused and frightened, Shaninlea Visser asked her boss to drive her to the hospital emergency unit.
“My hands and feet were on fire – it was the worst pain I’ve ever experienced,” Shaninlea tells us from her home in Sezela, south of Durban. “My kidneys started to fail and my arms and legs were pitch black. My nose and lips too.”
The diagnosis was shocking. Shan, as everyone calls her, had contracted septicaemia after a friend’s pet mongoose bit her on the hand.