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Infections News

Patients May Quickly Lose Beneficial Gut Bacteria in the ICU

Posted 11 hours ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 31, 2016 – Intensive care patients have a significant loss of helpful gut bacteria within days of entering the hospital, a new study finds. These bacteria help keep people well. Losing them puts patients at risk for hospital-acquired infections that may lead to sepsis, organ failure and even death, according to the researchers. For the study, the investigators analyzed gut bacteria from 115 intensive care unit (ICU) patients at four hospitals in the United States and Canada. Measurements were taken 48 hours after admission and after either 10 days in the ICU or leaving the hospital. Compared with healthy people, the ICU patients had lower levels of helpful bacteria and higher levels of potentially harmful bacteria, the findings showed. "The results were what we feared them to be. We saw a massive depletion of normal, health-promoting species," study leader Dr. Paul ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Gastrointestinal Disorders, Sepsis, Organ Transplant, Septicemia, Wound Sepsis

Antibiotic 'Report Card' Drills Guidelines Into Dentists

Posted 1 day 11 hours ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 30, 2016 – Dentists are less likely to prescribe antibiotics for patients after seeing a "report card" on their past prescription rates, a new study from the United Kingdom says. Previous research has suggested that dentists often prescribe antibiotics when they're not appropriate. Overuse of the drugs can contribute to antibiotic resistance. In this study, Jan Clarkson of the University of Dundee in Scotland and colleagues analyzed data from the U.K. National Health Service. They identified more than 2,500 dentists in Scotland who prescribed antibiotics. These dentists were randomly assigned either to receive a record of their monthly antibiotic prescribing rate or not get a record (this was the control group). In addition, a subset of dentists getting monthly reports also received a written message outlining national recommendations about antibiotic prescribing. At the ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Oral and Dental Conditions

Mideast Violence Erasing Decades of Health Gains

Posted 6 days ago by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 25, 2016 – The 2010 Arab uprising and more recent Mideast wars have harmed health and shortened life expectancy in many countries across the eastern Mediterranean, a new study shows. Researchers warn that strife in Syria, Yemen, Libya, Tunisia and Egypt, in particular, could reverse two decades of health gains and affect the region for years to come. They found that between 2010 and 2013, life expectancy fell six years in Syria and by roughly three months in Yemen, Tunisia and Egypt. "Life expectancy decline is traditionally regarded as a sign that the health and social systems are failing," said study leader Ali Mokdad, a professor of global health at the University of Washington. "The fact that this is happening in several countries indicates there is an immediate need to invest in health care systems," Mokdad said. In Syria, average life expectancy for men declined ... Read more

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

Fast Action Can Prevent Sepsis Death: CDC

Posted 8 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 23, 2016 – Many cases of life-threatening sepsis could be recognized and treated long before it causes severe illness or death, U.S. health officials report. Sepsis, or septicemia, occurs when the body has an extreme response to an infection. Without prompt treatment, organ failure can quickly follow. Researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that about 70 percent of patients with sepsis had used health care services recently or had chronic diseases that required regular medical care. That means there are many opportunities for health care providers to intercept sepsis along its potentially deadly course, according to the CDC report. "When sepsis occurs, it should be treated as a medical emergency," CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden said in an agency news release. "Doctors and nurses can prevent sepsis and also the devastating effects of ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Sepsis, Bacteremia, Septicemia, Wound Cleansing, Wound Debridement, Wound Sepsis

Gene Test Might Quickly ID Baby's Infection

Posted 8 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 23, 2016 – A quick genetic test might one day help doctors determine within hours whether a baby's fever is from a virus or a serious bacterial infection. "Doctors have great difficulty in distinguishing whether a child with a high fever has a bacterial or viral infection on clinical features alone," said Dr. Michael Levin. He is a professor of pediatrics and international child health at Imperial College London in England. "As a result, thousands of children each day worldwide undergo investigations to rule out bacterial infection and are generally treated with antibiotics while the results are awaited," said Levin. While viral infections generally resolve without treatment, bacterial infections can be life-threatening, so it's important to identify and treat them. But antibiotic overuse has led to a problem called antibiotic resistance – bacteria that don't respond to ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Fever, Bacterial Infection, Viral Infection, Diagnosis and Investigation

'Bagpipe' Lung Infection Kills Piper

Posted 8 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 23, 2016 – A British bagpipe player died after contracting a lethal fungal infection from his instrument, researchers say. As the experts explained, the moist interiors of wind instruments can promote the growth of fungi and molds that, when breathed in regularly, can cause chronic inflammatory lung condition called hypersensitivity pneumonitis. The disease is also often linked with regular exposure to birds, particularly pigeons. The new report involves a 61-year-old man who was diagnosed with hypersensitivity pneumonitis in 2009. He was admitted to hospital in 2014 after his condition worsened to the point that he had trouble breathing and walking. While doctors knew the patient had hypersensitivity pneumonitis, they didn't know the cause. He didn't handle pigeons. He didn't smoke. And, his house had no signs of mold or water damage. However, he did play bagpipes daily ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Respiratory Tract Disease, Fungal Pneumonia

Richer Houses Home to Wider Range of Bugs

Posted 10 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Aug. 19, 2016 – People aren't the only ones who like living in nicer neighborhoods. Turns out insects also have a taste for lush surroundings, researchers report. An examination of insects in 50 Raleigh, N.C., homes found richer neighborhoods have a greater diversity of plants, which attracts a greater variety of insects. Even individual homes without many plants in the yard are apt to have high levels of insect diversity in those neighborhoods, researchers add. That's likely due to features such as parks and communal landscaping that are often found in wealthier areas, as well as neighbors with lush landscaping. The study was published Aug. 3 in the journal Biology Letters. "The sheer amount of life thriving within your home – under carpet, in closets – is astonishing," lead author Misha Leong, a post-doctoral researcher at the California Academy of Sciences, said in an ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Insect Bites

Humans Can Pass Staph Germs to Monkeys

Posted 29 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 29, 2016 – A new study finds that monkeys can acquire Staphylococcus aureus bacteria from people. Many deadly diseases in people originally came from animals, but this study shows that dangerous pathogens can also move from people to animals, the researchers said. The investigators discovered that certain strains of S. aureus in green monkeys in The Gambia were acquired from humans. Most of the human-to-monkey transmission likely occurred 2,700 years ago. But two of the S. aureus transfers occurred about 30 years ago and about seven years ago, the findings showed. Those recent transmissions are likely the result of human encroachment into the monkeys' natural habitat, and probably resulted from bacteria transferred from human hands to food that was fed to monkeys, according to the study authors. "Although wild, these monkeys are very acclimated to humans, who often feed ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Diagnosis and Investigation

New Antibiotic Discovered in the Nose

Posted 29 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

A new antibiotic has been discovered in people's noses. German researchers analyzed germs that inhabit the human body and found that about 30 percent of people had Staphylococcus aureus bacteria in their noses, but 70 percent did not, the Associated Press reported. Those without S. aureus have another type of bacteria – Staphyloccus lugdunensis – in the nose that produces an antibiotic that keeps S. aureus in check, according to the study published online in the journal Nature. The scientists isolated this antibiotic, which they call lugdunin, and found that it was effective in treating mice whose skin was infected with S. aureus, the AP reported. Lugdunin may offer a new way to fight antibiotic-resistant staph bacteria, one of the superbugs that pose a major health threat worldwide. Tests of lugdunin in humans have yet to be conducted. Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Diagnosis and Investigation

Health Tip: Keep Kitchen Surfaces Clean

Posted 28 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

-- A clean kitchen is a healthy kitchen, so make sure your countertops, cutting boards and other surfaces are clean and bacteria-free. The Foodsafety.gov website recommends: Promptly clean up any spills or messes with a clean paper towel or dish towel. Frequently wash dish towels in the washing machine on the hot cycle. Use hot, soapy water to thoroughly clean cutting boards, countertops and food prep utensils after each use. To sanitize your countertops, use a solution of 1 gallon of water and 1 tablespoon of liquid chlorine bleach without fragrance. Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Infectious Gastroenteritis, Traveler's Diarrhea, Campylobacter Gastroenteritis

FDA Bolsters Warnings About Class of Antibiotics

Posted 26 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 26, 2016 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration announced Tuesday that it's strengthening label warnings on a class of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones because the drugs can lead to disabling side effects, including long-term nerve damage and ruptured tendons. The agency also cautioned that these bacteria-fighting drugs – including levofloxacin (Levaquin) and ciprofloxacin (Cipro) – shouldn't be prescribed for sinusitis, chronic bronchitis or simple urinary tract infections unless no other treatments options exist. "Fluoroquinolones have risks and benefits that should be considered very carefully," Dr. Edward Cox said in an FDA news release. He's director of the Office of Antimicrobial Products at the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "It's important that both health care providers and patients are aware of both the risks and benefits of ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Urinary Tract Infection, Peripheral Neuropathy, Sinusitis, Bladder Infection, Cipro, Bronchitis, Ciprofloxacin, Levaquin, Levofloxacin, Kidney Infections, Avelox, Myasthenia Gravis, Ofloxacin, Vigamox, Ciprodex, Moxifloxacin, Sinus Symptoms, Gatifloxacin, Pyelonephritis

Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria Detected in Sewage Spill

Posted 22 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 22, 2016 – Sewer line breaks can release antibiotic-resistant bacteria that pose a public health threat, a new study says. Consider the 2014 sewer line break in St. Petersburg, Fla., that released 500,000 gallons of untreated wastewater into neighborhoods and Boca Ciega Bay. University of South Florida researchers who did follow-up testing of soil and water said they detected genes from vancomycin-resistant bacteria for nearly two weeks after the sewer line break. One of those genes is capable of transferring vancomycin resistance to other strains of bacteria. Vancomycin, considered an antibiotic of last resort, is used to treat serious infections that don't respond to other antibiotics, the researchers noted. "While we have known that raw sewage contains many disease-causing bacteria, this experience tells us that sewage and fecal pollution also carry vancomycin-resistant ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Bacterial Infection, Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus Infection, Adjunct to Antibiotic Therapy

Mixed Progress in Worldwide Fight Against HIV/AIDS

Posted 19 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 19, 2016 – The number of HIV/AIDS deaths worldwide each year has fallen since peaking in 2005, but the number of new HIV infections is up in 74 countries, according to a new study. Deaths from HIV/AIDS fell to 1.2 million in 2015 from 1.8 million in 2005. Though the number of new HIV infections has decreased since a peak of 3.3 million in 1997, it has been relatively stable at about 2.5 million a year for the past decade. Worldwide, new HIV infections fell just 0.7 percent a year between 2005 and 2015, compared to 2.7 percent a year between 1997 and 2005, the study found. Sub-Saharan Africa continued to be a trouble spot, accounting for three-quarters of new HIV infections (1.8 million) in 2015. Last year, south Asia had 8.5 percent (212,500) of new infections; southeast Asia, 4.7 percent (117,500); and east Asia, 2.3 percent (57,500). Between 2005 and 2015, the ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, HIV Infection, Tamiflu, Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis, Incivek, Baraclude, Victrelis, Kaletra, Oseltamivir, Viread, Tenofovir, Norvir, Entecavir, Telaprevir, Nevirapine, Boceprevir, Prezista, Reyataz, Ritonavir, Norvir Soft Gelatin

Is Swimming Safe in Areas With the Freshwater 'Brain-Eating' Amoeba?

Posted 14 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, July 14, 2016 – The headlines are terrifying, and the story details are even worse as you read about a child who goes for a swim in a lake or river and then falls prey to a "brain-eating amoeba." The brain infection brought on by Naegleria fowleri, an amoeba that flourishes in warm open waters, can quickly prove fatal, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. As disturbing as these reports are, parents don't need to bar their kids from the local swimming spot due to fear of Naegleria, infectious disease experts say. These cases make headlines because they are so unexpected and devastating, but the infection itself is "very, very uncommon," said Dr. Amesh Adalja, a senior associate with the University of Pittsburgh's UPMC Center For Health Security. "You have to think about how many times people have exposure to water that has Naegleria in it, and how ... Read more

Related support groups: Infections, Amebiasis

2nd U.S. Case of Bacteria Resistant to Last-Resort Antibiotic

Posted 12 Jul 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 11, 2016 – Scientists have identified a second patient in the United States who was infected with a bacteria that is resistant to an antibiotic of last resort. The new case involved a patient in New York, while the first reported case involved a woman from Pennsylvania. However, the New York patient was actually infected more than a year ago and the resistant bacteria was only spotted recently in lab testing. The Pennsylvania infection occurred last spring, researchers said. Both patients had E. coli with a gene called mcr-1, which makes bacteria resistant to the antibiotic colistin, the scientists explained. In the latest study, the researchers tested more than 13,500 strains of E. coli and nearly 7,500 strains of Klebsiella pneumoniae collected from hospitals in North America, Latin America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region in 2015. The results showed that almost 2 ... Read more

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

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