Model Lauren Wasser who lost a leg on using tampon is at risk of losing another

Lauren Wasser used a tampon on October 3, 2012, and had no idea that she would lose a leg because of that. Photograph:( Instagram )

WION Web Team Delhi, India Dec 21, 2017, 09.01 AM (IST)

Model Lauren Wasser was close to death in 2012 after using a tampon that made her contract Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS), one of the rarest life-threatening complication caused by certain types of bacterial infections. It has been associated primarily with the use of super-absorbent tampons. 

The first time it was announced to her while in the state of being hospitalised, she thought she would never be able to model again. 

Just 24 years old, Los Angeles-based model Lauren Wasser used a tampon when she was on her periods on October 3, 2012.

Attending a party with friends, she had no access to tampons and went to the store to buy one. After she used the tampon, she immediately felt sick and lay down thinking it was flu. The next thing Wasser remembered was waking up to a police officer at her front door. 


In a recently penned down article for a US-based women's fashion magazine, Wasser writes:

"I remember coming to and hearing the sound of my cocker spaniel, Madison, barking out of control. 

She was trying to get me up because someone was knocking on my front door.

After that, I only know what I've been told.

The police agreed to check on me again and this time found me face down on the floor.

I was unresponsive, had a fever of 108, and was covered in my own faeces and vomit. They immediately called the paramedics and rushed me to the hospital." 

Upon investigation by an infectious disease specialist, it was found that the tampon Wasser wore was infected. The reports came back with signs of TSS-1 (Toxic Shock Syndrome).

What followed was horrific as Wasser was put into a medically induced coma as her organs began to shut down. After a week, she weighed 200 pounds – with all fluids she had been given in order to stabilise her blood pressure. She remembers her feet feeling like they were on fire.She developed gangrene in her right leg which progressed quickly. The heel on her left foot was severely damaged as were all five of her toes. Surgeons recommended amputating both legs at the same time, but she opted to only remove her right leg and to fight and save the left.

Toxic Shock Syndrome is very rare and there have been only 377 cases in the US reported in 2015. 

Currently, Wasser has dedicated herself to bringing awareness to TSS.