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Nebraska wrestler recovers from flesh-eating bacteria infection

<i>KETV</i><br/>Fifth-year senior Peyton Robb knows how to tackle the challenges in front of him. Two months ago
Fifth-year senior Peyton Robb knows how to tackle the challenges in front of him. Two months ago

By Josh Kristianto

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    LINCOLN, Nebraska (KETV) — Two months ago, a University of Nebraska-Lincoln wrestler noticed an odd bruise on his shin while competing at the national tournament in Tulsa.

He ended up at the hospital, facing weeks of treatment for an aggressive bacterial infection that threatened to take his leg.

Fifth-year senior Peyton Robb knows how to tackle the challenges in front of him. But he faced the match of his life in March when he started feeling really sick at a tournament in Oklahoma.

“By that time, my whole leg had gotten red and swollen, so I had to go to the hospital,” said Robb.

That hospital visit turned into 13 more days under intense medical care in Lincoln, where he had to go through multiple surgeries on his leg.

Doctors discovered Robb had necrotizing fasciitis, a bacterial infection of the tissue that eats away at healthy cells.

The only option: remove much of the tissue and start treatment at CHI Health St. Elizabeth Regional Burn and Wound Center’s hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

“By doing surgery, getting this opened up and kind of cleaned out as well as then presenting more oxygen into both the tissue from that wound being opened as well as just in the bloodstream basically helps kind of suppress and help kill the bacteria in addition to antibiotics,” said Roy Maurer, a physician associate.

HBO therapy involves taking 100 percent oxygen and pumping it into a pressurized chamber. Doctors say it helps cells recover faster and more efficiently.

But it takes time — Robb has spent five days a week for six weeks laying in this tank for two hours and 15 minutes a day.

“There was a lot of moments where I was just kind of in pain. Sometimes it was just subtle, sometimes a little bit more,” said Robb.

But through it all, Robb has kept a positive attitude despite facing the possibility of losing his left leg. He is now down with his treatment and expects to be back working out soon.

“I just learned to keep that positive outlook in whatever situation you’re in, and I think that helped me through the whole thing,” said Robb.

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