Heather’s Story (Meningococcal Disease)


Heather Tufano was an 18 year old freshman attending college in New York City when she contracted meningococcemia. Her symptoms began at 11:00 PM with fever, chills, and pain in her joints, so extreme that she could not walk. By early the next morning, a black and blue rash spread quickly all over her legs. She was immediately brought to the intensive care unit at a local hospital to find out she had a 5% chance of living that night.

Heather was in the hospital for 3 months and underwent roughly 8 surgeries, including the amputation of her right foot and 2 fingers. Once she left the hospital, Heather had to learn how to walk again by going to physical therapy for several months. Since she left the hospital in January of 2005, Heather returned to school and has now graduated college.

Acquired from www.nmaus.org