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Bedbugs kill woman, caretaker faces charges

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  1. crossroads

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sat Feb 25 2017 22:47:41
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    A very sad and poignant story:

    http://www.vcstar.com/story/news/nation-now/2017/02/25/bedbugs-kill-woman-caretaker-faces-charges/98408062/


    On Feb. 6, Stoner was brought to the emergency room, where doctors found sores on her skin. Staff members were under the opinion the woman's infection was a result of bed bug bites.
    Stoner was discharged from the hospital about a week later, only to be readmitted again. Doctors said she had pneumonia.
    She died a week later.

    Perhaps authorities will begin to treat this issue as the public health issue it actually is? (as opposed to a 'nuisance')

  2. Livingagain

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 0:39:56
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    Very sad. I also feel for the caretaker in this situation. Bed bugs are very difficult to get rid of and she thought she could trust the store products that claimed they would work. Many people don't have the money for an extermination pro, and even with one, there are no guarantees.

    The government should at least have a public health role of distributing information about this, better than it does.

    I imagine there are many people really suffering in silence.

  3. Poiqm

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 1:25:30
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    Very sad. This experience with bed bugs has made me worry about the elderly who don't know how to get help, can't afford it, or can't get the products they need.

    Account closed
  4. crossroads

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 6:00:57
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    barelyliving - 5 hours ago  » 
    The government should at least have a public health role of distributing information about this, better than it does.

    Agree, banning sale of bedbug sprays and bombs would also be a start. Since every expert in the field agrees they are counter productive, what purpose is served allowing their sale. Also, generic insecticide sprays should have to clearly indicate on the label they are not suitable for bed bug use.

  5. FayeState

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 6:12:32
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    I'm sure you're right, bareliving, that many people are suffering in silence. The people on web sites such as this one are probably just the tip of the iceberg.

  6. loubugs

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 9:34:54
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    It's a sad story, but there isn't a one-to-one relationship that her pneumonia stemmed from the bed bug bites and infection. She became debilitated, but she had to pick up pneumonia organisms and in her state could have become infected during her visits to the hospital.

    They scurried on the bed sheets and pillow where an elderly woman slept in a first-floor room. She told officers she was blind, but could "feel them crawling." Sometimes, she added, they bit her, too.
    The site of the former Luckenbaugh Personal Care Home in the 2000 block of Baltimore Pike.
    -- This facility isn't inspected by the state if it is registered as a personal care facility? How many people could stay in that house? There were 2 noted in the story, one of which was blind. She said sometimes they bit her, too, when obviously she has been their main food source for how ever long she has been there.

    Stoner's family moved her out of Butler's home on Feb. 3, 2016, after noticing her health worsen. During previous visits, Stoner's family told police she was in good health. On Feb. 6, Stoner was brought to the emergency room, where doctors found sores on her skin. Staff members were under the opinion the woman's infection was a result of bed bug bites.
    She said she could not afford an exterminator and blamed Stoner for bringing in the bugs, documents state. In talking with police prior to Stoner's death, Butler told them she had been trying to get rid of the bed bugs since September 2015 and had used store-bought supplies.
    -- Family didn't notice bed bugs over the time during previous visits of at least 1 year?

    Butler, who was charged last week, had taken Stoner to her family doctor in January because Stoner had been scratching her neck and been sick. Butler did not mention bed bugs during the doctor's appointment, police said, and Stoner didn't mention them either.
    -- She most likely had secondary infection from scratching.

    The over-the-counter products except for the total release aerosols or bombs work. The active ingredients of the TRA products work, actually, it's the delivery system that is no good. The usual OTC products work, but the application instructions are not followed by the people using it. Total reliance on only applying a liquid insecticide is not the answer.

    There is a lot more to this story that will come out.

    Professional entomologist/arachnologist. I consult on all matters dealing with insects and arachnids, including those of natural history and biology to pest management and forensic entomology investigations.
  7. SopranoKris

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 9:56:18
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    I am an ICU nurse and have seen my fair share of patients come through with skin infections due to things such as lice, ticks, fleas & bed bugs. Usually, it is due to people not properly caring for the elderly person's skin. In a frail person who cannot ambulate on their own, they need to be turned every 2 hours to prevent bed sores and they need to be bathed and thoroughly dried. Many times, when we have patients with skin infections, they've been allowed to sit for days, weeks, even months in one position with no proper skin care (left to sit in a wet/dirty adult brief, or left lying in their own urine/feces with no sheet changes, etc.)

    The bites from the bugs cause terrible itching, which causes them to scratch. They break the skin and the bacteria enters an already compromised immune system. It's a recipe for disaster. Especially if they end up with MRSA or VRE.

    It always saddens me to see how poorly our elders are treated sometimes. I get the feeling from this article that this was a private home and a woman had offered to "care" for the 2 women staying in her home as long as the family paid her. That is an illegal care facility. There's a reason care facilities need to be inspected and licensed. I know the home owner claims the patient who died is the one who brought in the bed bugs. However, she shouldn't have been allowed to get in to such a poor state of health in the first place. You can't tout yourself as a caregiver when you have no clue what you're doing!

  8. crossroads

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 11:05:31
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    loubugs - 1 hour ago  » 
    It's a sad story, but there isn't a one-to-one relationship that her pneumonia stemmed from the bed bug bites and infection.

    Hi Lou,
    Yes granted these things are multifactorial, however do note that the autopsy specifically blamed the bugs -- at least according to the police (something I failed to include in my post):


    An autopsy determined her cause of death was from "complications of sepsis followed by bed bug infestation," according to charging documents.

  9. Poiqm

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 13:26:44
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    I am an ICU nurse and have seen my fair share of patients come through with skin infections due to things such as lice, ticks, fleas & bed bugs. Usually, it is due to people not properly caring for the elderly person's skin. In a frail person who cannot ambulate on their own, they need to be turned every 2 hours to prevent bed sores and they need to be bathed and thoroughly dried. Many times, when we have patients with skin infections, they've been allowed to sit for days, weeks, even months in one position with no proper skin care (left to sit in a wet/dirty adult brief, or left lying in their own urine/feces with no sheet changes, etc.)

    Heartbreaking.

  10. loubugs

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Sun Feb 26 2017 19:38:45
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    crossroads - 7 hours ago  » 

    loubugs - 1 hour ago  » 
    It's a sad story, but there isn't a one-to-one relationship that her pneumonia stemmed from the bed bug bites and infection.

    Hi Lou,
    Yes granted these things are multifactorial, however do note that the autopsy specifically blamed the bugs -- at least according to the police (something I failed to include in my post):


    An autopsy determined her cause of death was from "complications of sepsis followed by bed bug infestation," according to charging documents.

    I read he newspaper article. That's what they wrote, but, unfortunately, the doctors who performed the necropsy might not have come up with the correct conclusion although it looked like the most obvious. Did the bacteria in her skin lesions that she scratched (reported to be almost 50% of her body by her family) cause the sepsis or did other bacteria in other lesions on her contribute to the sepsis? Both types of sores could have been the origin of infection and later death. Bed sores, bathed and not dried, not turned in bed, etc., also could be contributing factors. Maybe also complications from pneumonia. Emergency room doctors noted that infections from bed bug bites and most likely derived from scratching.
    SopranoKris, who is an ICU nurse, explained very well what can happen to patients who get are neglected.
    The caregiver (Butler) kept patients in her home and the family who visited their relative (Stoner) wasn't in bad shape when they visited other times (at LPCH or in Butler's home?). They never noticed any bed bugs? If Stoner brought them from home (as Butler stated), these relatives (daughter and granddaughter) didn't realize they had/have bed bugs in their home(s)? I thought the 2 women in Butler's home came directly from the closed down care facility. Luckenbaugh Personal Care Home has had how many patients over the years? She was caring for the 2 women in her home (which was across the street from LPCH) after she shut down Luckenbaugh years before. Did the original facility have bed bugs? Butler must have had more help when the facility was open. According to online access, nothing wrong over three years: Pennsylvania Department of Human Services annual reports on personal care homes show no violations at Luckenbaugh Personal Care Home between 2008-2011, the only years for which reports that list individual homes' violations are online.
    She had been caring for the woman who eventually died for over 10 years (2006 onwards? Facility closed in 2011?) - not sure how long the deceased was in Butler's home for care. Police also saw bed bugs crawling on Butler's adopted sister, who was 48 at the time, who is intellectually developmentally disabled when they came over to inspect after Stoner died. The victim (Stoner) died Feb. 22, 2016. I don't remember hearing about this a year ago.
    See these stories: http://www.pennlive.com/news/2017/02/caretaker_charged_after_elderl.html
    http://www.eveningsun.com/story/news/crime/2017/02/24/hanover-area-caretaker-charged-bed-bug-death/98379006/
    http://www.eveningsun.com/story/news/2017/02/25/how-protect-your-loved-one-private-care/98411130/

  11. bugged-cdn

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Feb 27 2017 17:38:04
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    The caretaker admits to battling bed bugs since 2015 without professional help for economic reasons.

    Wow....

  12. BigDummy

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Feb 27 2017 20:02:41
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    That's a very sad story. Regardless of the initial cause of her wounds the neglect seems cruel. Just working at a shelter can be tough work, I can't imagine what running an ALF is like.

  13. damnbb

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Mon Feb 27 2017 23:31:15
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    I am an ER nurse and I have seen many patients come in septic. This patient died of complications of sepsis. The sepsis was not caught early enough to start treatment - which is the most important part. If you are septic and treatment is not started in a timely manner then your chances of survival go down almost immediately. The more delayed the care for sepsis is, the greater increase in mortality.

    Unless the patient had extreme reactions to bed bug bites then I do not think this could have caused her to pass away. She was a 96-year-old female who unfortunately was not taken care of properly. It's quite possible her last ailment of pneumonia is what tipped her over.

    That being said, it is VERY sad when elderly patients come in and you can physically see the neglect. I have also deconned many people that come in with bed bugs, lice, maggots, etc all over because they either can't take care of themselves and have no on else to do it or have to live in an environment that is not suitable but cannot leave due to economic issues. You won't believe the smiles I get when they're all washed up and free of those bugs. It's sad to see. Truly, there should be better ways to help those who cannot afford to exterminate pests.

  14. loubugs

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 0:24:02
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    damnbb - 51 minutes ago  » 
    I am an ER nurse and I have seen many patients come in septic. This patient died of complications of sepsis. The sepsis was not caught early enough to start treatment - which is the most important part. If you are septic and treatment is not started in a timely manner then your chances of survival go down almost immediately. The more delayed the care for sepsis is, the greater increase in mortality.
    Unless the patient had extreme reactions to bed bug bites then I do not think this could have caused her to pass away. She was a 96-year-old female who unfortunately was not taken care of properly. It's quite possible her last ailment of pneumonia is what tipped her over.
    That being said, it is VERY sad when elderly patients come in and you can physically see the neglect. I have also deconned many people that come in with bed bugs, lice, maggots, etc all over because they either can't take care of themselves and have no on else to do it or have to live in an environment that is not suitable but cannot leave due to economic issues. You won't believe the smiles I get when they're all washed up and free of those bugs. It's sad to see. Truly, there should be better ways to help those who cannot afford to exterminate pests.

    I couldn't agree with you more. Thanks for your input. I think the statement that she died due to bed bug bites was not quite right and complications from that plus pneumonia were the culprits.

  15. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 8:30:02
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    Hi,

    As a point of interest a coroner has recorded bed bugs as the direct cause of death. At Horseferry coroners court, Westminster England about 1860 a death was recorded as exsanguination due to bed bugs. It is referenced in the Fortean Times book of unusual deaths.

    Complications that arise from exposure to bed bugs is a little more common as with this case and the possibility remains of anaphylaxsis but this is thankfully a rare condition (I have confirmed only 1 case in 15 years).

    Its truly sad when we read about these things because they are so eminently resolvable in the right mechanisms are in place.

    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

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    In accordance with the AUP and FTC (legal requirements) I openly disclose my vested interest in Passive Monitors as the inventor and patent holder. Since 2009 they have become an integral part in how we resolve bed bug infestations. I also have a professional relationship with PackTite in that they distribute my product under their own branding. I do not however receive any financial remuneration for any comments I make about products.
  16. loubugs

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 8:36:07
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    bed-bugscouk - 2 minutes ago  » 
    Hi,
    As a point of interest a coroner has recorded bed bugs as the direct cause of death. At Horseferry coroners court, Westminster England about 1860 a death was recorded as exsanguination due to bed bugs. It is referenced in the Fortean Times book of unusual deaths.
    Complications that arise from exposure to bed bugs is a little more common as with this case and the possibility remains of anaphylaxsis but this is thankfully a rare condition (I have confirmed only 1 case in 15 years).
    Its truly sad when we read about these things because they are so eminently resolvable in the right mechanisms are in place.
    David Cain
    Bed Bugs Limited

    David, that's correct. The woman didn't die from exsanguination or anaphylactic reaction to the salivary components. I pointed out in an earlier post that the coroner's statement wasn't quite true.
    Interesting about the one case of bed bug exsanguination. There was no further explanation in the report? He was drained of blood? There have been cases reported of anemia due to extensive feeding.

  17. bed-bugscouk

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 8:46:16
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    Hi Lou,

    If you can find the case details, the coroners court is about 4 miles from my home, I will see if I can make arrangements to obtain a copy of the documents. Or if you are coming to ICUP we can try and make a field trip of it.

    David

  18. Ombugsman

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 11:19:54
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    I've twice had skin cancer so I get an annual skin check. During the check a few months after my infestation, I decided to ask the dermatologist about the risks of constant bed bug bites. I'd already thoroughly researched the subject but wanted to hear directly from a doctor. He said that the bedbugs don't inject anything harmful or carry disease but he told me there is the risk in some cases of an allergic reaction and also that their bites do pierce the skin and if there are many bites, the risk for secondary infections goes up for people who have weakened immune systems. He gave the example of a frail elderly person who is bedridden.

    That reflects the general consensus in the medical community. Still, it's not 100% certain. Look at this article discussed on WebMD:
    http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/news/20110511/do-bedbugs-spread-mrsa

    That being said, it is VERY sad when elderly patients come in and you can physically see the neglect. I have also deconned many people that come in with bed bugs, lice, maggots, etc all over because they either can't take care of themselves and have no on else to do it or have to live in an environment that is not suitable but cannot leave due to economic issues. You won't believe the smiles I get when they're all washed up and free of those bugs. It's sad to see. Truly, there should be better ways to help those who cannot afford to exterminate pests.

    There is a better way and it's called CimeXa. If the local hardware store or supermarket had stocked it and that caretaker had bought it, we wouldn't have to have these type of discussions of primary infections or complications from secondary infections. Why do people think esteemed entomologist and researcher Dr Potter did a study on actual infested residences using only DE and then followed it up with another one using only CimeXa? He could have done the experiment using only Temprid for example. If you read the end of the article, he tells you:

    When it comes to bed bugs, there is an escalating need for effective, low-cost, sustainable solutions, especially for underserved populations that are disproportionately suffering. Silica gel, one of our most timeworn insecticides, could be one such solution.

  19. Nobugsonme

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Tue Feb 28 2017 15:52:20
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    Ombugsman,

    The latter part of your last post is off-topic. This is not a thread about treatments. Cimexa is valued by many on this forum and has a place in our FAQs and Useful Tools pages as well. It isn't a miracle cure, however.

    Ombugsman and Big Dummy,

    Your argument above and Poiqm's interjections are now deleted. At best, it's a form of hijacking, at worst, it's uncivil and a form of trolling, no matter who started it or what the motivation is.

    I started and run the site but am "not an expert."
  20. Ombugsman

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    Posted 2 years ago
    Wed Mar 1 2017 9:55:43
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    NoBugs - I'm puzzled why you say this thread is not about treatment. Sure there's discussion about to what extent bed bugs might have contributed to her death, whether directly or indirectly. But there was also a discussion of what actions the government might take including banning certain products and improved labeling. Doesn't that fall under the rubric of "treatment"? The OP participated in that discussion so s/he apparently didn't consider it off-topic.

    I cited Michael Potter, one of the most respected figures in the field, who tested CimeXa as the ONLY tool in the treatment of a number of infested residences. Again the reason he used CimeXa alone (and DE alone in earlier study) is because that might be the only product a low income person could afford. They might not be able to afford a PCO or even encasements. I'll quote him again at the end of the study: When it comes to bed bugs, there is an escalating need for effective, low-cost, sustainable solutions, especially for underserved populations that are disproportionately suffering. How is that off-topic to this discussion since the caretaker herself said she treated with store-bought products and couldn't afford an exterminator?

  21. Nobugsonme

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    Thu Mar 2 2017 0:14:25
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    Ombugsman - 14 hours ago  » 
    NoBugs - I'm puzzled why you say this thread is not about treatment. Sure there's discussion about to what extent bed bugs might have contributed to her death, whether directly or indirectly. But there was also a discussion of what actions the government might take including banning certain products and improved labeling. Doesn't that fall under the rubric of "treatment"? The OP participated in that discussion so s/he apparently didn't consider it off-topic.
    I cited Michael Potter, one of the most respected figures in the field, who tested CimeXa as the ONLY tool in the treatment of a number of infested residences. Again the reason he used CimeXa alone (and DE alone in earlier study) is because that might be the only product a low income person could afford. They might not be able to afford a PCO or even encasements. I'll quote him again at the end of the study: When it comes to bed bugs, there is an escalating need for effective, low-cost, sustainable solutions, especially for underserved populations that are disproportionately suffering. How is that off-topic to this discussion since the caretaker herself said she treated with store-bought products and couldn't afford an exterminator?

    I don't disagree with anything Dr. Potter has said.

    I also do not have any problem with Cimexa, and in fact it is suggested in the FAQ on DE and Cimexa and in the Useful Tools page.

    However, there's a difference between saying the residents should have had better treatment and there are more effective products available vs. turning every thread on every topic into a pitch for Cimexa:

    "There is a better way and it's called CimeXa."


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