Doctor Links Flesh-Eating Bacteria to Chicken Pox

Infectious disease expert Dr. Carol Baker said Wednesday that the varicella vaccine could be the best way to protect children from necrotizing fasciitis. Baker, of Texas Children’s Hospital, explained that approximately 50 percent of children diagnosed with the flesh-eating disease had also had chicken pox. The bacteria, which can be deadly if not treated in time, enter the body through chicken pox lesions. Baker noted that although chicken pox vaccines have been available for four years, only about 25 percent of U.S. children have received them, in part because of the public perception that chicken pox is harmless.