Superbug That Developed Resistance to 26 Antibiotic Kills Woman in Nevada

Superbug That Developed Resistance to 26 Antibiotic Kills Woman in Nevada PHOTOGRAPH: A. | Clindamycin (A./FLICKR) with CC BY (2.0, BY-SA)

A dreaded superbug that developed resistance to all 26 available antibiotics has killed a woman in Nevada. This is the first that such microorganism developed such ability to fend off every single antibiotic. Experts feared this could bring serious trouble to the entire medical field.

Although the woman from Reno, Nevada had died in September, it was only just recently that doctors have identified the cause of her death. Doctors initially reported that the woman suffered from incurable diseases, which later caused her death. Analysis revealed that the woman was actually infected with the dreaded superbug, the Scientific American reported.

Antibiotic Resistant Microorganisms

It showed that the infection spread throughout the woman’s body and all 26 available antibiotic were futile in stopping the disease. Reports, however, showed that this was not the first time that the case was reported in the United States. But experts said it is rare, let alone alarming.

The recent event underscores the need for the entire medical community to rethink the problem on antibiotic resistant infection. This may also be a wake up call to take antibiotic resistant superbug research seriously. Hospitals, for their part, should also institute a measure to effectively screen patients who have had previous hospitalizations abroad, among other things.

It’s Impact on Health System

These recommendations are among the highlights of the report published by the U.S CDC this week. The report noted the need for concerted efforts from across other sectors in addressing these pan-resistance infections. It also emphasized how screening at the hospital level could have mitigated the spread of the infection.

The patient, whose identity has been withheld, was a 70-year-old Reno resident who spent years in India where she got a leg injury. While in India, the patient was hospitalized for several occasions and received some other medical treatments. In August this year, she was hospitalized in Reno where she was diagnosed with CRE or carbapenem-resistant enterobacteriaceae. CRE is a condition where the person is infected with bacteria that developed immunity to a common antibiotic considered as a last-line of defense—carbapenems.

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