Is this the end of the antibiotic era, and what will hospitals and clinicians do about it? No one knows. Read this link.
For the first time, researchers have found someone — a Pennsylvania woman — in the United States carrying bacteria resistant to antibiotics of last resort.
“It basically shows us that the end of the road isn’t very far away for antibiotics — that we may be in a situation where we have patients in our intensive-care units, or patients getting urinary tract infections for which we do not have antibiotics,” Tom Frieden, M.D., director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told The Washington Post May 26.
“I’ve been there for TB patients. I’ve cared for patients for whom there are no drugs left. It is a feeling of such horror and helplessness,” Dr. Frieden added. “This is not where we need to be.”
The Post noted: “Scientists and public health officials have long warned that if the resistant bacteria continue to spread, treatment options could be seriously limited. Routine operations could become deadly. Minor infections could become life-threatening crises. Pneumonia could be more and more difficult to treat.”
“This is definitely alarming,” said David Hyun, a senior officer leading an antibiotic-resistance project at the Pew Charitable Trust, told The Washington Post. “The fact that we found it in the United States confirms our suspicions and adds urgency to actions we need to work on antibiotic stewardship and surveillance for this type of resistance.”
Congress has agreed to give hundreds of millions of dollars to federal agencies to fight antibiotic-resistant bacteria.