Scientists warn of global epidemic of superinfection

November 16, 2019  17:16

Antibiotic-resistant bacteria pose a more serious threat than previously thought. Resistant bacteria infect 3 million Americans each year and kill 35,000 of them, a report by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said.

According to Science Alert, every 11 seconds one person becomes infected with a resistant bacterium, and every 15 minutes someone dies of a refractory superinfection. The situation is complicated by the fact that over the past 30 years not a single new class of antibiotics has been developed, and resistance to existing ones is spreading at an alarming rate.

The good news is that mortality from superinfection was reduced by 30% due to improved methods for tracking pathogens in hospitals where such infections are most common.

The most dangerous bacteria today are Clostridioides difficile, drug-resistant gonorrhea and carbapenem-resistant enterobacteria. All of these pathogens are resistant to all or almost all antibiotics and kill up to half of infected patients.

It is equally important not to use antibiotics without a doctor's prescription, because this contributes to the spread of antibiotic resistance.

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