Our everlasting fight against bacteria

hospital by BertBeckers

Rising Threat of Infections Unfazed by Antibiotics
[Via NYT > Health]

A minor-league pitcher in his younger days, Richard Armbruster kept playing baseball recreationally into his 70s, until his right hip started bothering him. Last February he went to a St. Louis hospital for what was to be a routine hip replacement.

By late March, Mr. Armbruster, then 78, was dead. After a series of postsurgical complications, the final blow was a bloodstream infection that sent him into shock and resisted treatment with antibiotics.


As I wrote yesterday, our use of antibiotics is probably making bacteria much better are getting around all the different barriers we put up. Now we have bacteria we have not been targeting with antibiotics causing problems.

INterestingly, the report comments on several people who were able to fight off the infection.

Our immune systems protect us against infection by being adaptive, changing our response depending on how the infectious agent adapts. Perhaps we should also look at finding ways to enhance our immune responses.

The other thing is for hospitals to do a better job with their own sanitation procedures. Lack of proper hand washing and cleansing is a big problem.

One thought on “Our everlasting fight against bacteria

  1. Did you know that there is a “check-list” for hospitals, doctors and nurses? Sometimes even very smart people forget to do something very routine, like wash their hands. Many hospitals claim to use it as it cuts down fantastically on infections, but the question to ask is “do you allow nurses to remind doctors of the check list”. If the answer is “no”, one knows the list isn’t being used!

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