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Woman Loses Both Her Legs And Almost Dies After Using Tampon Correctly

A woman named Lauren Wasser has lost her legs and almost died after using a tampon correctly.
Credit: @theimpossiblemuse/Instagram

A woman lost both her legs and almost died after she used a tampon correctly. 

Tampons are a widely used menstrual product, designed to provide comfort and convenience during menstruation.

These small, absorbent devices allow people to continue their daily activities without interruption.

However, while tampons are a common part of many people’s lives, it’s essential to understand proper usage, potential risks, and benefits.

Lauren Wasser followed the instructions on a tampon box but faced a devastating outcome – she’s now spoken out and is warning others.

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People have taken to the comments after hearing Wasser’s heartbreaking story.

One writes: “Listened to her on a podcast, such an awful story. This could happen to any woman at any time.”

“Thank you Lauren for being brave enough to share your story even if it only helps one person you have succeeded,” another comments.

A third says: “Omg, that’s so scary.”

Lauren Wasser
Lauren Wasser lost both her legs after using a tampon correctly. Credit: @theimpossiblemuse/Instagram

In 2012, Wasser, at age 24, claims she dutifully changed her tampons every four hours during her period.

“You should change your tampon regularly – around every 4 to 6 hours depending on your flow,” as advised by the NHS.

However, Wasser began experiencing flu-like symptoms and within hours, she was on the brink of death.

Wasser’s friends quickly observed her worrying condition on a day out and advised her to go home and rest.

But hours would go by without communication and the 24-year-old’s mother grew concerned, contacting the police for a welfare check.

When an officer arrived, they noted Wasser’s illness, however, they deemed it not serious enough to warrant immediate hospitalisation.

Lauren Wasser
Lauren Wasser says she was found ’10 minutes from death’. Credit: NBC

Wasser, now at age 36, recalls how she felt at the time on the Life Uncut podcast.

“I was extremely hot. By this time I was developing a 41.5C (107F) fever so I wanted all of my clothes off,” she says.

“My dog was jumping on me ferociously and barking at me. She knew something was wrong. My body was shutting down.”

Wasser says she was soon found face down on the floor ’10 minutes from death’ and was rushed to hospital.

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Her condition would deteriorate rapidly – she suffered two heart attacks, kidney failure, and tissue decomposition, per The Sun.

Hospital staff gave her a one per cent chance of survival and told Wasser’s parents to prepare for the worst.

“They couldn’t figure out why this young, healthy 24-year-old girl was dying before them,” Wasser says.

Lauren Wasser
Lauren Wasser would be told she had contracted toxic shock syndrome. Credit: @theimpossiblemuse/Instagram

Despite efforts, the damage to Wasser’s limbs proved irreversible. Consequently, her right leg was amputated below the knee, as well as some of her left toes and a portion of her heel on her left foot, per MailOnline.

Later, in 2018, she would have her left leg removed after battling ‘excruciating pain’.

“Everything happened so fast,” she recalls. “My life, within 24 hours, completely changed and there was no going back.”

It would soon be confirmed that Wasser had contracted toxic shock syndrome (TSS), a rare but life-threatening condition.

The NHS confirms: “Toxic shock syndrome is a rare but life-threatening condition caused by an infection. It can happen when using a tampon or menstrual cup, or from an infected wound. Symptoms develop quickly and you need urgent treatment.”

TSS is relatively uncommon, with Clue reporting that each year toxic shock syndrome affects about one in 100,000 menstruating people in the US.

Lauren Wasser
Lauren Wasser, now known as the ‘girl with the golden legs’, is now a successful model. Credit: @theimpossiblemuse/Instagram

Wasser, known as the ‘girl with the golden legs’, now works as a model – she’s walked the runway for Louis Vuitton and appeared in Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar and Glamour.

The 36-year-old emphasises the importance of awareness about TSS, saying “Every single person needs to be aware of this. People think they’re invincible but no one is off limits.”

Wasser – who now exclusively uses period pads – also wants to dispel the myth that TSS is caused by leaving tampons in for more than eight hours, she says the illness can happen even to those who use them correctly.

Cleveland Clinic elaborates: “There isn’t a set time for when symptoms of TSS start after using a tampon.”

Wasser concludes: “We’re putting that inside of us at such a delicate time and it creates a perfect storm. It takes one of those toxins to get inside your body and start acting like the flu and shutting down your organs, it’s lethal, it’s dangerous.

“It’s my goal and life mission to make sure that not only is this information out there but women have these conversations amongst each other, create the dialogue and check in with each other because knowledge is key.”

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Written by Annie Walton Doyle

Annie Walton Doyle is a content editor at IGV who specialises in trending, lifestyle and entertainment news. She graduated from Goldsmiths, University of London, with a degree in English Literature. Annie has previously worked with organisations such as The Huffington Post, The Guardian, The Telegraph, Harvard University, the Pulitzer Prize and 22 Words.