Melissa (left) and Georgia were backpacking in Mexico as they travelled round the world

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A British woman fighting for her life after she was mauled by a crocodile in Mexico has developed sepsis as she is treated for a long list of injuries.

The crocodile did a "death roll" with Melissa Laurie, 28, in its jaws as she and her twin sister Georgia were attacked by the animal while swimming in a lagoon.

Melissa, a zookeeper, remains in a "delicate" condition in hospital after being placed in a medically induced coma, while Georgia, who was injured as she fought off the crocodile three times to save her sister, has been discharged.

The next two to five days will be "key" to Melissa's "hopeful recovery" after she suffered serious lung injuries, lacerations to her organs and bite marks to her body, her family said.

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Melissa (left) and Georgia Laurie were attacked by a crocodile in a lagoon in Mexico

The twins' older sister Hana Laurie, 33, told the BBC that bite wounds to Melissa's stomach and legs had become infected, and her condition is "still really serious".

Hana said: "She has now developed sepsis."

Sepsis is a life-threatening reaction to an infection and hard to spot. It happens when the immune system overreacts to an infection and starts to damage the body's own tissues and organs.

Hana said Melissa had "a lot of water and grass and things in her lungs" as a result of the crocodile attempting to drown her.

In an update on a GoFundMe page, Hana wrote: "We have spoken to a doctor now and have a little more info on Mel's condition but it's very much a wait and see game still.

The crocodile put Melissa in a "death roll" and attempted to drown her (stock photo)
(Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

"The next 2-5 days will be key but luckily she's cut from the same jib as a CrocodilePuncher."

She later added at midday on Wednesday that Georgia had been discharged from hospital but is staying near to the hospital "to continue with dressing changes and treatment".

Hana added: "She [Georgia] has told us she went to see Melissa before she left and it was really hard. Mel is very bruised, has two black eyes and deep cuts to her face, torso and leg where the crocodile has bitten and scratched her.

"There's currently no change in information for Melissa's condition which remains 'delicate', but we think stable. We wait to see how she reacts and recovers over the coming days."

Their father Sean, 63, is due to travel to Mexico soon.

The horror incident happened on Sunday at the Manialtepec Lagoon, known for bioluminescent creatures that glow in the dark. It is about 10 miles from Puerto Escondido, a resort on Mexico’s Pacific coast.

The sisters' family, from Sandhurst, Berkshire, say the pair had booked a tour through their hostel and the guide had assured them that it was safe to swim in the water.

The women found out later their tour guide was not registered and had taken them to swimming spot which was not recommended, Hana said previously.

The attacked happened at the Manialtepec Lagoon in Mexico's Oaxaca state
(Image: De Agostini via Getty Images)

The twins' father Sean said the crocodile snatched Melissa and then took her in a "death roll" under the surface until Georgia managed to save her.

Georgia punched the crocodile, estimated to be 10ft in length, and fought off its advances three times as she rescued her sister, suffering a gruesome wrist injury.

Sean told MailOnline: "The crocodile took her [Melissa] in a death roll, turning her over and over under water. Fortunately Georgia got to her."

He said Melissa was "half-drowned" during the attack.

The twins' family has started a GoFundMe page to cover hospital costs

She was in a serious condition and a medically induced coma to prevent any infection to her injuries, which included water on her lungs, a suspected punctured lung, an open wrist fracture, lacerations to her organs and internal bleeding, and lacerations and bite injuries all over her body, her family said.

The twins' mum Sue Laurie, 63, said the siblings' unbreakable bond had saved their lives.

She said: "If Georgia had not have been there who knows what would have happened."

Cassie Leventhal, the sisters' travelling companion, claims the guide was unregistered and had been known for holding illegal tours in "unsafe areas where crocodiles live".

Melissa is still fighting for life in hospital, while Georgia has been discharged

She claims the guide was "nowhere to be found" on Tuesday after visiting Melissa and Georgia in hospital.

Melissa and Georgia were backpacking and volunteering at animal sanctuaries in Mexico during a trip round the world. They had set off in March and were planning to return home in November.

Their family has launched a GoFundMe page to cover hospital bills and costs associated with bringing the sisters home.

The page had raised more than £30,000 as of midday on Wednesday.

Hana thanked supporters in the UK and abroad, including Dr Esteban Bolanos, who is helping the family to communicate with Spanish-speaking staff caring for Melissa.

Hana said their father is due to fly to Mexico in the coming days.

The country is on the UK's amber list for travel amid the Covid pandemic.

A spokeswoman for the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office said: “We are supporting the family of two British women who are in hospital in Mexico, and are in contact with the local authorities.”