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(May 14) — After his wife was seized by a rapidly advancing infection shortly after giving birth, a Texas man agreed to have her limbs amputated in a last-ditch effort to save her life.

On Feb. 10, 41-year-old Katy Hayes delivered a baby girl, Arielle, at the Kingwood, Texas, home where she lives with husband Al and their two other children.

“She was in a lot of pain after the birth,” family friend Michele Dykstra told KIAH News. “It was a home birth, no drugs, eight hours of labor, almost a 10-pound baby. So a little pain is to be expected, but the pain kept getting worse and worse.”

By Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day, it had gotten so bad that Al took his wife to Kingwood Medical Center. There, doctors confirmed a diagnosis of invasive group A streptococcal disease, a rare variant of the bacterial infection known as strep throat. But while the latter can be successfully treated with antibiotics, the type of infection Katy suffered from is far more dangerous and, if left to develop, much harder to treat.

Within hours of arriving at the hospital, Katy suffered massive organ failure; on Feb. 15, she lapsed into a coma.

“Her doctors told me that she had less than a 5 percent chance of surviving,” Al told ABC News, “and that ‘nobody comes out of this,’ because once the snowball effect happens of organs shutting down, there is nothing medical science can do to reverse it.”

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