The Grapevine

Lauren Wasser, Model Suing Kotex After Losing Leg To Toxic Shock Syndrome, Poses In Nordstrom Holiday Calendar

Lauren Wasser
Lauren Wasser lost her leg after contracting toxic shock syndrome from a tampon. She's now made a recent comeback with a Nike spread. Instagram/ theimpossiblemuse

After having her right leg amputated three years ago due to toxic shock syndrome (TSS), Lauren Wasser, is now the face of a major modeling campaign. On her Instagram account, the former basketball player and model recently posted photos of herself modeling Nike in the Nordstrom holiday calendar.

In 2012, Wasser contracted TSS after using a Kotex super plus tampon. "They found me face-down in my bedroom, 10 minutes from death," she told Vice News. "Then they rushed me to the hospital where all my organs were failing. I had numerous blood transfusions."

Which is why after the entire ordeal Wasser figured her modeling career was over, she said in another interview with Vice News. "I literally was laying there thinking that my life was over," she said. "I would never be accepted again, I could never model again. No one would look at me the same."

Wasser said it took her a while to accept her new identity, and she admitted she'd cry on a stool in the shower, knowing her wheelchair awaited her.

With the help of her girlfriend, Jennifer Rovero, who also happens to be a photographer, Wasser said that she was finally able to see herself, "inside and out." Rovero would snap photos of Wasser even when she wasn’t feeling up to it — she called it her "photo therapy."

"I would just mean-mug her and be so angry, but through her showing me those pictures, I saw myself in a whole different light," she said.

Besides modeling, Wasser also hopes to bring awareness and transparency to TSS.

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