‘Nightmare’ bacteria spreading in U.S. hospitals, nursing homes: CDC

March 6, 2013 HEALTHA “nightmare” bacteria that is resistant to powerful antibiotics and kills half of those it infects has surfaced in nearly 200 U.S. hospitals and nursing homes, federal health officials reported Tuesday. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said 4 percent of U.S. hospitals and 18 percent of nursing homes had treated at least one patient with the bacteria, called Carbapenem-Resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE), within the first six months of 2012. “CRE are nightmare bacteria. Our strongest antibiotics don’t work and patients are left with potentially untreatable infections,” CDC Director Dr. Thomas Frieden said in a news release. “Doctors, hospital leaders and public health [officials] must work together now to implement the CDC’s ‘detect and protect’ strategy and stop these infections from spreading. The good news,” Frieden added at an afternoon teleconference, “is we now have an opportunity to prevent its further spread.” But, he continued, “We only have a limited window of opportunity to stop this infection from spreading to the community and spreading to more organisms.” CRE are in a family of more than 70 bacteria called enterobacteriaceae, including Klebsiella pneumoniae and E. coli, that normally live in the digestive system. In recent years, some of these bacteria have become resistant to last-resort antibiotics known as carbapenems. Although CRE bacteria are not yet found nationwide, they have increased fourfold within the United States in the past decade, with most cases reported in the Northeast. Health officials said they’re concerned about the rapid spread of the bacteria, which can endanger the lives of patients and healthy people. For example, in the last 10 years, the CDC tracked one CRE from one health-care facility to similar facilities in 42 states. One type of CRE, a resistant form of Klebsiella pneumoniae, has increased sevenfold in the past decade, according to the CDC’s March 5 Vital Signs report. “To see bacteria that are resistant is worrisome, because this group of bacteria is very common,” said Dr. Marc Siegel, clinical associate professor of medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City. Most CRE infections to date have been in patients who had prolonged stays in hospitals, long-term facilities and nursing homes, the report said. The bacteria kill up to half the patients whose bloodstream gets infected and are easily spread from patient to patient on the hands of health-care workers, the CDC said. Moreover, CRE bacteria can transfer their antibiotic resistance to other bacteria of the same type. This problem is the result of the overuse of antibiotics, Siegel said. “The more you use an antibiotic, the more resistance is going to emerge,” he said. “This is an indictment of the overuse of this class of antibiotic.” What’s needed are new antibiotics, Siegel said, adding that pharmaceutical companies lack the financial motivation to develop them right now. “Eventually, there will be enough resistance so drug companies will have a financial incentive. In the meantime, lives can be lost,” he said. –MSN
contribution by Nickko
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23 Responses to ‘Nightmare’ bacteria spreading in U.S. hospitals, nursing homes: CDC

  1. Chris says:

    part of the last days pestilences… prophecied.


  2. bobby90247 says:

    Are any of the 200 hospitals in California???


  3. Irene C says:

    One reason I try to stay away from hospitals or even doctor’s offices unless it’s absolutely necessary.


  4. romalynn says:

    This one resembles MSRA, but is more deadly. Same thing here, once only found in hospitals, long term care etc, then it went public. Yes the bible has told us of these things I do agree.


  5. Dennis E. says:

    I would almost to anything other than being admitted to the hospital. I have found through experience
    with family members that when a loved one is admitted, get cleansing anti-bacteria wipes and wipe down the rails, door knobs,bathroom and everything that that you and the admitted one may touch.
    And please, don’t leave them there thinking they will get consistent care, because they don’t. Family members need to be there and involved.

    Just my opinion


    • laura m. says:

      Agreed, anyone entering a hospital should have a container of antibacterial wipes in their luggage. Same when you check in a motel, wiping door nobs, electronics pads, phones; anything touched by others. A can of Lysol spray for the bath area too. Anti bacterial hand soap also.


      • El Gato says:

        The overuse of antibacterial agents is the cause of this and the solution is to advocate MORE use of antibacterials? The introduction of antibacterial soaps were decried as a possible cause of bacterial resistance to anti bacterials I understand.


    • elijahsmom3 says:

      Not just your opinion. Very sound, wise advise. Being in the health care industry in the past, I have all kinds of first hand accounts about carelessness by caregivers and health care professionals that would horrify most people. (Nick has heard some of them from previous similar posts.) I will personally not let a loved one be in a hospital setting without another family member by their side 24/7 if they are not in a state to fend for themselves. Universal precautions are NOT followed on a consistent basis to keep the spread of infection to a minimum. When I read the part about the CDC relying on doctors and health officials to implement the “detect and protect” strategy, it just gives me chills. Something as simple as one nurse or one aide or one doctor forgetting to wash their hands in between patients can literally kill a person in this day and age. I took care of an elderly gentleman that contracted MRSA in a nursing home and eventually died from it. There is no such thing as being overly cautious in these situations anymore.


    • Beeb says:

      Dennis E: I second what you say. I do the same thing and think the same way. Having gone through my mother going into the hospital for a mild heart aliment and ending up in intensive care with the flu so bad she almost died (the flu she got in the hospital), I now wipe everything she and I can touch, as you say, multiple times, including her and my hands, and use masks if she even goes to the doctor’s office. BTW, when she was well enough to be released from the hospital the doctor said, and I’m not joking, “Let’s get her out of here before we give her something else that’ll kill her.” YIKES!


    • Michele B says:

      I have worked in/for the healthcare system for some 30 years and I agree. This is sound advice.


  6. Maverick says:

    Natural selection. Any given species, confronted to hostile conditions (be it their environment, disease, whatever) will eventually survive through a few individuals who happened to have the right DNA, suitable behavioral patterns, or enough dumb luck. We humans fare neither better nor worse than bacteria … Humbling thought, isn’t it ?


  7. ALBIRRR says:



  8. nanoduck says:

    There are natural treatments that are effective, as well as proper nutrition/lifestyle that can help keep you out of hospitial and doctor’s office. Most of the prescription and over the counter meds are poison.


  9. Angelsong says:

    Sadly, we are told that new antibiotics are needed to treat a nightmare bacteria which was created by the overuse of antibiotics in the first place…


  10. Karina says:

    I am a volunteer at a hospital and have seen many people in the ladies room come out without touching the water, also in the market places. These people go and handle vegetables and fruits, or spread the bacteria in their hands to different areas of the hospital they are visiting. There is a lot of people in this country from third world countries that hardly ever leanred anything about hygene!


  11. M C says:

    These are the stories that get me a bit worried because i’m sure to be exposed to it at some point in some form at work.

    If I dont die at my current job from some bug in the next year and a half i’ll probably survive most anything.


  12. Ciao says:

    Let’s hear from some microbiologists on the subject.


  13. Bubba says:

    Will ObamaCare protect us from CRE???


  14. Joan K says:

    Bacteria are becoming immune to our antibiotics because we are overusing antibiotics. It is not because we are demanding antibiotics from doctors in order to cure our ailments but we are overdosing on antibiotics everytime we eat red meat. Cows are given antibiotics and where does it go? The antibiotics in the cow goes to us when we eat the meat from those cows. Think about it. Why is there an increase in super bacteria immune to antibiotics? Why is there a massive increase in cancer? What about the increase in autism? It is the genetically engineered food we are eating! Think about it.


  15. alette says:

    Thank you for placing my comment. I trult believe in natural medicines because I’m. Staying on a farm and 99.9 times a docter isn’t availabe where I have to rely on my old boer remedies and I have never lost a patient(animal or human).


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