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Infections News

Synthetic Mucus Could Battle Bacteria

Posted 11 hours ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 25, 2017 – Snot, phlegm and other forms of mucus may not be everyone's favorite subject, but scientists say synthetic mucus might help save lives. Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology said the lab-made goo could help combat antibiotic-resistant bacteria. By replicating mucus' natural ability to control dangerous bacteria, the hope is to find new ways to fight infections. "I am so excited about mucus because I am convinced it can help us find new strategies for protecting us from infections, in particular those that relate to an overgrowth of harmful microbes," said study author Katharina Ribbeck, an MIT professor of tissue engineering. According to background notes with the study, a person's body produces about a gallon of mucus every day. Far from being a hindrance, mucus provides a protective coating on more than 2,000 square feet of internal ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Oral and Dental Conditions, Toothache, Prevention of Dental Caries, Babesiosis

Some Surprising Sources of Germs

Posted 20 hours ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 25, 2017 – You might think of public restrooms as scary breeding grounds for germs, but two everyday items can spread colds and the flu as fast as a bathroom doorknob. They're your phone and your computer. More germs reside on these two items than on most any toilet seat. Most of the germs on your phone come from your own hands and mouth. But you can also pick up germs by putting down your cell phone in a public place or by sharing your computer with others. To minimize germs, don't share your cell phone and get in the habit of periodically wiping it off with antibacterial wipes or rubbing alcohol. On your computer, the keyboard and mouse are the worst germ offenders. That's why cleaning your computer the right way is a must. Start by shutting it down and unplugging it. Next, turn over the keyboard and shake out any dust or crumbs. Then wipe down each computer component ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Viral Infection

When to Make Use of the Nose in a Medical Emergency

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, April 21, 2017 – A growing number of U.S. emergency rooms are giving patients medication through the nose instead of via injections or IVs, new research shows. The new approach "is easy, fast and noninvasive," wrote emergency department pharmacist Megan Rech and colleagues from Loyola University Health System in Maywood, Ill. Doctors or nurses simply place an atomizer attached to a syringe in the patient's nostril. When they push a plunger, a mist of medicine is released inside the nose, the study authors explained. Not only is that approach less painful than needles or IVs, it also reduces the spread of infectious diseases, according to the researchers. In some patients, including children, the elderly and the obese, the intranasal approach can deliver medication to the bloodstream more quickly than an injection, the researchers said. The study authors also noted that IVs and ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Flonase, Nasonex, Afrin, Nasacort, Veramyst, Oxymetazoline, Omnaris, Astelin, Azelastine, Nasacort AQ, Dymista, Otrivin, Tetrahydrozoline, Twice-A-Day, 4-Way, Rhinocort, Olopatadine, QNASL

Illness From 'Kissing Bug' Now Widespread in U.S.

Posted 8 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, April 18, 2017 – It's spread by an insect that's often called the "kissing bug." And now, the parasitic infection know as Chagas disease is prevalent in the United States, new research shows. Investigators tested nearly 5,000 Latin American-born residents of Los Angeles County in California. They found that 1.3 percent had Chagas disease, which can cause life-threatening heart damage if not treated early. "Less than 1 percent with the infection are receiving treatment for Chagas disease," said study author Sheba Meymandi. Meymandi is director of the Center of Excellence for Chagas Disease at Olive View-University of California, Los Angeles Medical Center. Chagas disease is caused by a parasite called Trypanosoma cruzi, which is transmitted by the triatomine bug – also called the "kissing bug" – found throughout the Americas. About 30 percent of infected people develop ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Sexually Transmitted Diseases

Health Highlights: April 10, 2017

Posted 16 days ago by Drugs.com

Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay: Dead Bat Found in Fresh Express Packaged Salad The presence of a dead bat in packaged salad bought from a grocery store in Florida is being investigated by state health officials and the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Two people said they ate some of the salad before discovering the bat, which was sent to the CDC rabies lab for testing. However, the bat was too deteriorated to determine if it had rabies. The risk of rabies among the two people who ate the salad is low, but they were advised to begin rabies treatment, the CDC said. No similar cases have been reported. Due to the incident, Fresh Express on April 8 issued a recall for Organic Marketside Spring Mix sold in clear containers with the production code G089B19 and best-if-used-by date of APR 14, 2017 ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Rabies Prophylaxis

Infections More Common in People With Schizophrenia

Posted 4 Apr 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, April 3, 2017 – People with schizophrenia may face an increased risk for serious infections, a new study suggests. "The preliminary data results suggest that individuals with schizophrenia have higher prevalence of all types of severe infections compared to the background population," study author Monika Pankiewicz-Dulacz, from the University of Southern Denmark, and colleagues wrote. "Clinicians should be aware that people with schizophrenia are the risk group for severe infections. General guidelines and suggestions regarding prevention of severe infections among schizophrenia patients are needed, and they should address a wide range of areas including hygiene, diet, activities, medications, treatment of comorbid [co-existing] conditions and vaccinations," the researchers concluded. However, the study's findings only show a link between schizophrenia and certain infections, ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Urinary Tract Infection, Bacterial Infection, Schizophrenia, Schizoaffective Disorder, Bacterial Skin Infection, Tuberculosis, Skin and Structure Infection, Viral Infection, Infectious Hepatitis, Wound Infection

Study Suggests Heartburn Meds-Superbug Infections Link

Posted 27 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 27, 2017 – Patients who take certain heartburn medications may be more likely to suffer recurrent bouts of a common "superbug" infection, a new study suggests. Proton pump inhibitors, such as Prilosec, Prevacid and Nexium, or so-called H2 blockers, such as Zantac, Pepcid and Tagamet, were linked to a 50 percent increased risk of developing multiple Clostridium difficile infections, researchers found. However, the study did not prove these heartburn medications cause recurrent C. difficile infections, just that an association appears to exist. And one specialist not involved with the study said the findings won't make him change his prescribing patterns. C. difficile can cause diarrhea and life-threatening inflammation of the colon. In the United States, about half a million people get sick from C. difficile each year. In recent years, these infections have become more ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, GERD, Bacterial Infection, Omeprazole, Nexium, Prilosec, Pantoprazole, Zantac, Protonix, Ranitidine, Lansoprazole, Dexilant, Prevacid, Pepcid, Barrett's Esophagus, Aciphex, Famotidine, Heartburn Relief, Rabeprazole, Esomeprazole

Raccoon Parasite Not as Deadly to Humans as Thought

Posted 25 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 24, 2017 – A raccoon parasite that can be deadly in humans can infect people without causing symptoms, a new study indicates. It was believed that the parasite Baylisascaris procyonis, or raccoon roundworm, led to severe neurological problems and even death in infected people. But University of Georgia (UGA) researchers found that isn't necessarily true. They looked at 347 wildlife rehabilitation workers – who are at higher risk of infection due to frequent contact with raccoons – and found that 24 of them tested positive for the parasite. However, none had any symptoms of infection, according to the study published recently in the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's journal Emerging Infectious Diseases. "This suggests that not all infections with this parasite lead to severe disease," Michael Yabsley, a professor with the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Helminthic Infection, Worms and Flukes

Health Tip: Check Your Child's Temperature

Posted 23 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

-- If you think your child might have a fever, it's important to take the child's temperature correctly. The Mayo Clinic offers these guidelines: From birth to 3 months of age, you'll get the most accurate reading using a digital thermometer and taking the temperature rectally. From 3 months to 4 years old, a digital thermometer used rectally or under the armpit is preferred. Wait until your child is at least 6 months old to use a digital ear thermometer. Starting at age 4, your child can probably hold a thermometer under the tongue. Other options include a temporal artery thermometer, a digital ear thermometer or a digital thermometer placed under the armpit. Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Fever, Bacterial Infection

Fewer Patients Die During Hospital Inspection Weeks: Study

Posted 23 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 23, 2017 – Hospital patients may be less likely to die if they are treated during weeks that inspectors are checking on the staff, a new study suggests. In the United States, hospitals are accredited by a body known as the Joint Commission. Inspectors from the commission make unannounced visits to each hospital every 18 to 36 months, to make sure staff are complying with standards for patient safety and care. The new study asked a basic question: Do patients fare better if they are treated during an inspection week? The answer, it seems, may be yes. Researchers found that across nearly 2,000 U.S. hospitals, Medicare patients had a slightly lower risk of dying within 30 days if they were admitted during an inspection week, versus other weeks. The difference was small: Among patients admitted during a non-inspection week, 7.2 percent died within 30 days. That compared ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Prevention of Cardiovascular Disease, Cardiovascular Risk Reduction

Hospital Room Floors May Harbor 'Superbugs'

Posted 2 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, March 2, 2017 – Hospital room floors may be more of a "superbug" threat than many hospital staffers realize, new research suggests. "Efforts to improve disinfection in the hospital environment usually focus on surfaces that are frequently touched by the hands of health care workers or patients," explained lead researcher Dr. Abhishek Deshpande, from the Cleveland Clinic, in Ohio. "Although health care facility floors are often heavily contaminated, limited attention has been paid to disinfection of floors because they are not frequently touched," Deshpande added. Yet, items in a patient's room can come into contact with the floor, which can lead to the transfer of multidrug-resistant bacteria to hands, clothing, call buttons, medical devices, linens and medical supplies, the researchers explained. In their study, the team took samples from the floors of 159 patient rooms in ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Bacterial Skin Infection, Bacteremia, Wound Infection

Government Funding Could Save Canadians $4 Billion on Medicines

Posted 27 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 27, 2017 – A new report suggests that Canada would reap savings of more than $4 billion a year if the government funded nearly 120 types of "essential" medications. "Adding an essential medicines list is a pragmatic step toward universal pharmacare," said Steven Morgan, in a news release from the Canadian Medical Association. "It would ensure all Canadians have access to the most commonly required medicines while saving patients and private drug plan sponsors over $4 billion per year," Morgan said. He's a professor at the University of British Columbia. The report authors listed 117 drugs as essential medications. This list included antibiotics, insulin, birth control and antidepressants. These drugs made up 44 percent of all prescriptions filled at Canadian retail pharmacies in 2015. When "therapeutically similar" drugs were included in the list, that figure was as high ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Plan B, Lexapro, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Effexor, Prozac, Mirena, Nexplanon, NuvaRing, Provera, Depo-Provera, Sprintec, Celexa, Implanon, Citalopram, Paxil, Sertraline, Pristiq, Doxycycline

Hospital Sinks May Be Awash in 'Superbugs'

Posted 27 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 27, 2017 – New research suggests that the battle against "superbugs" – multidrug-resistant bacteria – should begin in hospital sinks. In the study, scientists found that germs colonize in drainpipes and gradually make their way into sinks. The researchers warned that this is one way hospital patients could be exposed to superbugs. Previous research has shown that patients are dying from multidrug-resistant bacterial infections while in the hospital. More than 32 studies have described the spread of bacteria resistant to the last-resort antibiotic, carbapenem, through sinks and other areas where water can pool inside hospitals, the study authors explained. "We wanted to better understand how transmission occurs, so that the numbers of these infections could be reduced," said lead investigator Dr. Amy Mathers. She is an associate professor of medicine and pathology at the ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Ertapenem, Meropenem, Invanz, Merrem, Primaxin IM, Cilastatin/Imipenem, Merrem Novaplus, Primaxin IV, Doribax, Doripenem, Wound Infection

Many Americans Unaware of 'Superbug' Threat: Poll

Posted 27 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, Feb. 27, 2017 – Antibiotic-resistant "superbugs" are a major public health threat, but most Americans are clueless about the dangers, a new HealthDay/Harris Poll shows. More than two-thirds of U.S. adults know "little" or "nothing" about so-called superbugs – bacterial infections that are resistant to many or all antibiotics. And around half believe, incorrectly, that antibiotics work against viruses. That's a concern because improper antibiotic use is considered the major driver of the superbug problem – a problem with deadly consequences. "This poll shows that public ignorance is a huge part of the problem," said Humphrey Taylor, chairman emeritus of The Harris Poll. "Millions of patients continue to believe that antibiotics will help them recover from colds, flu and other viral infections," Taylor said, "and they can be upset with their doctors if they will not prescribe ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Doxycycline, Bacterial Infection, Azithromycin, Bactrim, Cipro, Ciprofloxacin, Augmentin, Levaquin, Zithromax, Sulfamethoxazole, Erythromycin, Clarithromycin, Minocycline, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Bacterial Skin Infection, Levofloxacin, Clavulanate, Bactrim DS, Avelox

Prison Time Can Be Deadly … to Health

Posted 26 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 24, 2017 – Prison time can exact a deadly toll on health, new research suggests. Being behind bars puts people at greater risk for both developing certain types of cancer and dying from their disease, Canadian researchers found. "We know that people who spend time in jails and prisons in Canada are more likely to use alcohol and tobacco, as well as have infections such as HPV (human papillomavirus) and HIV, which can increase the risk of developing some types of cancer," said study author Dr. Fiona Kouyoumdjian. She is a researcher at St. Michael's Hospital and McMaster University in Toronto. For the study, the researchers followed nearly 50,000 people sentenced to jail time in Ontario in 2000. Specifically, the investigators examined how many of these inmates developed cancer and how many died from the disease over the course of 12 years. By 2012, 2.6 percent of the men ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Cancer, Hepatitis C, Smoking, Sexually Transmitted Diseases, Smoking Cessation, Colorectal Cancer, Human Papilloma Virus, Cervical Cancer, Viral Infection

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