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Infections Blog

Pet Geckos May Pose Health Risk

Posted 1 day 13 hours ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 21, 2015 – Your pet gecko might make you sick, a new study suggests. Researchers analyzed fecal samples from Indonesian tokay geckos – an imported species popular as pets in the United States. They found antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the intestines that may pose a health threat to owners. "The study shows how importing animals can introduce bacteria into households," study co-author Sonia Hernandez, an associate professor of wildlife diseases at the University of Georgia, said in a university news release. "In general, it's a good idea to know what bacteria an animal is bringing in. Any new animal, especially one imported from another country, could introduce new bacteria into a pet owner's household," she added. The geckos had high rates of resistance to antibiotics commonly used in the United States, such as cephalosporins and penicillins, the investigators found. ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection

Health Tip: Swimming Pools Can Harbor Germs

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

-- While most swimming pools contain chemicals to help kill germs, these germ-destroyers may not be 100 percent effective all the time. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends: Shower to help rinse off germs before you get into the water. Never urinate or pass a bowel movement in swimming water. If you have diarrhea, don't go swimming. Never drink pool water. Every hour, have kids get out of the pool for a bathroom break or diaper change. Make sure chlorine and pH levels are safe before anyone gets in the water. Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Diarrhea, Diarrhea, Chronic, Infectious Diarrhea, Diarrhea, Acute

Researchers Hone in on Genes Linked to Serious Blood Infection

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 13, 2015 – It might be possible to develop a blood test that would diagnose severe blood infections (sepsis) at an earlier stage than can be done currently, new research suggests. Stanford University researchers have identified a pattern of gene activity associated specifically with sepsis. Sepsis is the leading cause of hospital deaths in the United States, according to the researchers. The condition is associated with the early deaths of at least 750,000 Americans a year and costs the health care system more than $24 billion annually. "It's critical for clinicians to diagnose sepsis accurately and quickly, because the risk of death from this condition increases with every passing hour it goes untreated," study senior author Purvesh Khatri, an assistant professor of biomedical informatics research, said in a university news release. However, it can be difficult to ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Sepsis, Septicemia, Diagnosis and Investigation

Pig Farmers at Greater Risk for Drug-Resistant Staph Infections: Study

Posted 16 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, May 7, 2015 – Pig farm workers are at increased risk for multidrug-resistant staph infections, new research indicates. Most infections caused by Staphylococcus aureus are minor, but this strain of the bacteria can sometimes cause serious infections, and drug-resistant strains are becoming more common. Researchers followed more than 1,300 people who lived in rural areas or small towns in Iowa for 17 months. Overall, 26 percent of the people in the study carried Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, a rate slightly lower than the national average of 30 percent. But pig farm workers were six times more likely to carry multidrug-resistant S. aureus than people who were weren't exposed to pigs, and they were also more likely to become infected, according to the study published recently online in the journal Clinical Infectious Diseases. "S. aureus does not typically make pigs sick, but ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Nasal Carriage of Staphylococcus Aureus

'Cruise Ship' Norovirus Bug Can Spread by Air, Study Finds

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2015 – Noroviruses – those notorious stomach bugs that have infected scores of people and ruined countless cruise ship vacations – can spread through the air and infect people several feet away, according to new research. These findings suggest that current safety precautions implemented to control noroviruses may not be enough. The study also helps explain why outbreaks of the illness are difficult to contain, the researchers said. "The measures applied in hospital settings are only designed to limit direct contact with infected patients," the study's leader, Caroline Duchaine, a professor at Universite Laval's Faculty of Science and Engineering in Quebec, Canada, said in a university news release. "In light of our results, these rules need to be reviewed to take into account the possibility of airborne transmission of noroviruses. Use of mobile air-filtration ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Infectious Gastroenteritis, Infection Prophylaxis

Outbreaks of Gut 'Superbug' More Common in Northeast: Study

Posted 17 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, May 5, 2015 – Infections with the superbug known as Clostridium difficile have been the most prevalent in the Northeast during the past decade, new U.S. research shows. University of Texas researchers looked at slightly more than 2 million cases of infection with the germ, which causes colon inflammation and life-threatening diarrhea. The bug causes more health care-related infections in U.S. hospitals than any other, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The findings were published in the May issue of the American Journal of Infection Control. C. difficile costs as much as $4.8 billion in estimated extra health care costs per year, according to CDC estimates. Roughly half a million infections occurred in 2011, killing 29,000 patients within a month of their diagnosis, according to the agency. The University of Texas researchers found the Northeast ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Clostridial Infection

Half of U.S. Hospitals Could Do More to Prevent Serious Infections, Study Finds

Posted 29 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 29, 2015 – Too few hospitals in the United States are doing everything they can to protect patients from a potentially deadly intestinal infection, a new study finds. Researchers from the University of Michigan surveyed almost 400 hospitals nationwide to determine what measures they had taken to prevent Clostridium difficile infections, which kill nearly 30,000 Americans a year and cause illness in hundreds of thousands more. Hospital patients are at high risk for C. difficile infections and for suffering serious effects, especially if they have taken antibiotics, which disrupt the normal community of bacteria in their digestive systems. Symptoms include diarrhea, fever, nausea and loss of appetite. "C. difficile infection over the last decade has emerged as a threat to patients, especially the most vulnerable and the elderly, and has increased in incidence and ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Metronidazole, Bactrim, Flagyl, Bactrim DS, Polymyxin B, Xifaxan, Septra, Sulfamethoxazole/Trimethoprim, Zyvox, Rifaximin, Bacitracin, Septra DS, Metro, Chloramphenicol, Cotrimoxazole, Sulfatrim, SMZ-TMP DS, Flagyl IV, Clostridial Infection

As the Weather Warms, Avoid Gardening's Pitfalls

Posted 7 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 7, 2015 – Exercise and fresh food are among the benefits of gardening, but there are also potential hazards that you can take steps to avoid, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Proper clothing and safety gear is essential. Wear gloves to protect your hands from skin irritants, cuts and contaminants. Guard against ticks and mosquitoes by wearing a long-sleeved shirt and long pants tucked into your socks. High rubber boots are a good idea because ticks usually lurk close to the ground. Use an insect repellant with DEET, the CDC recommends. When using power tools and equipment, wear safety goggles, hearing protection, sturdy shoes and long pants. Be sure the equipment is working properly. Keep tools, equipment and harmful chemicals out of children's reach. Protect yourself from the sun by wearing long sleeves, a wide-brimmed hat, sun glasses and ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Tetanus

Tobacco Smoke Strengthens 'Superbug,' Lab Research Finds

Posted 6 Apr 2015 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 6, 2015 – Cigarette smoke appears to strengthen a dreaded "superbug," new research in mice shows. Exposure to tobacco smoke prompts methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteria to become even more aggressive, and makes it harder for the immune system to fight off the infection, researchers from the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine found. "We already know that smoking cigarettes harms human respiratory and immune cells, and now we've shown that, on the flipside, smoke can also stress out invasive bacteria and make them more aggressive," study senior author Dr. Laura Crotty Alexander, an assistant clinical professor of medicine at UC San Diego, said in a university news release. However, it's important to note that the results of animal and laboratory experiments don't necessarily hold in humans. MRSA infection is caused by a ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Augmentin, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Clavulanate, Amoxicillin/Clavulanate, Cloxacillin, Dicloxacillin, Methicillin, Amoclan, Zosyn, Nafcillin, Augmentin XR, Unasyn, Augmentin ES-600, Oxacillin, Timentin, Tazobactam, Clavulanate/Ticarcillin, Tegopen, Bactocill

When to Keep Kids Home From School

Posted 20 Mar 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 20, 2015 – Trying to determine whether to keep a child home from school due to illness can be difficult for parents, but a pediatrician offers some advice on how to make that call. "Being a parent is a juggling act, but throw in a child being home sick from school and the delicate balance topples. Many parents ask: When is it important to keep my child home from school and when should I send them?" Dr. Hannah Chow-Johnson, a pediatrician at Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill., said in a university news release. "There are times when it's best for the child and his or her classmates to just remain at home," said Chow-Johnson, who's also an assistant professor in the pediatrics department at Loyola's School of Medicine. One common problem is pinkeye – conjunctivitis. "Your child is contagious with bacterial or viral conjunctivitis until the redness and ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections

FDA Tightens Rules on Endoscopes Tied to 'Superbug' Outbreaks

Posted 12 Mar 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 12, 2015 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Thursday issued final recommendations for the cleaning and sterilization of medical devices used in invasive procedures. The updated rules, first proposed in 2011, were released in response to last month's reports of seven serious infections and two deaths at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, which were caused by duodenoscopes contaminated with a "superbug." On March 4, four similar "superbug" infections were reported at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. Duodenoscopes are devices used to diagnose and treat problems in the liver, pancreas and gallbladder. The FDA and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention "have been devoting a great deal of effort to understand the circumstances and reasons for the episodes of drug-resistant bacterial infections associated with duodenoscopes," Dr. ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection

Common Antiseptic Can Prevent Infant Deaths, Study Says

Posted 6 Mar 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 6, 2015 – Using a low-cost antiseptic to clean the umbilical cords of babies born outside of a hospital lowers infant infection and death rates in developing countries, researchers say. "Based on our review, using chlorhexidine to clean the umbilical cord saves newborn babies lives," said lead researcher Anju Sinha of the Indian Council of Medical Research in New Delhi. The findings were based on 12 clinical trials, some of them conducted in Africa, Southeast Asia and South America. The results were published March 5 in the Cochrane Library. "The greatest benefits were seen in the Southeast Asian studies," Sinha said in a journal news release. "The results from African studies are less convincing, so we would like to see whether the results from ongoing trials in Zambia and Tanzania can substantiate this evidence," Sinha added. The review concluded that cleaning umbilical ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Chlorhexidine, Hibiclens, Peridex, Periogard, Betasept, Perisol, Dyna-Hex, Calgon Vesta, Exidine, Chlorostat 4, Spectrum-4, Hibistat Towelette, Denti-Rinse, PerioChip, Chlorostat, Hibistat, Bactoshield, Biopatch

Airport Screenings Miss Roughly Half of Sick Travelers: Study

Posted 27 Feb 2015 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 27, 2015 – Airport screenings for infectious diseases often miss 50 percent or more of sick travelers, mostly because people do not tell the truth about their exposure to illnesses, a new study suggests. "Honest reporting can not only improve on-site detection, but is essential to enable authorities to follow up with travelers who may have been exposed but have not yet developed symptoms," wrote researcher and graduate student Katelyn Gostic, from the Lloyd-Smith Lab at University of California, Los Angeles. Using a mathematical model, researchers from UCLA and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine analyzed airport screenings for six viruses: SARS coronavirus, Ebola virus, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), Marburg virus, influenza H1N1, and influenza H7N9. They found one of the biggest barriers to successful health screenings at airports ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Viral Infection

FDA Medwatch Alert: Colistimethate for Injection USP, 150 mg and Rifampin for Injection USP, 600 mg/vial by Heritage Pharmaceuticals: Recall - Lack of Sterility Assurance

Posted 25 Feb 2015 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: Heritage Pharmaceuticals Inc. announced the voluntary nationwide recall of ten (10) lots of Colistimethate for Injection, USP, 150 mg Single-Dose vial (NDC 23155-193-31) and three (3) lots of Rifampin for Injection, USP, 600 mg Single-Dose vial (NDC 23155-340-31) manufactured by Emcure Pharmaceuticals Ltd. and distributed by Heritage. Heritage has initiated this voluntary recall to the user level due to FDA observations pertaining to aseptic and GMP practices at the manufacturer's site potentially impacting product sterility. See the Press Release for a listing of affected lot numbers. Intravenous administration of non-sterile injection products to a normally sterile site may result in a site-specific or systemic infection, which in turn may cause hospitalization, significant morbidity (permanent organ damage), or fatal outcome. To date, Heritage is not aware of any adverse ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Rifampin, Colistimethate, Rifadin, Rifadin IV, Rimactane, Coly-Mycin M

2 Deaths, Scores of Potential 'Superbug' Infections at UCLA Med Center

Posted 19 Feb 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 19, 2015 – At least 100 patients may have been exposed to medical devices contaminated with a "superbug" at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, where the devices are already believed to be responsible for seven serious infections, including two deaths. Endoscopes that were used to perform digestive procedures between October and January were contaminated with Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), hospital officials said Thursday. The hospital said about 100 patients may have been exposed to the contaminated devices. The Associated Press reported that 180 patients might be at risk. Free home-testing kits are being delivered to all potentially infected patients, and UCLA will analyze the results, the medical center said. The two endoscopes thought responsible for the infections were used in the diagnosis and treatment of pancreatic and bile duct ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Infection Prophylaxis

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