Carbapenem, About Cre/Kpc

It shouldn’t happen — someone goes inlớn the hospital to get better and instead comes out with a potentially deadly “superbug” infection.

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CDC’s Kitty Anderson holds up a 96-well plate used for testing the ability of bacteria khổng lồ growth in the presence of antibiotics.CDC
It shouldn’t happen — someone goes inlớn the hospital to get better and instead comes out with a potentially deadly “superbug” infection.

The lademo big case involves the UCLA health system, which is warning 160 or more patients that they may have sầu been given a procedure using equipment contaminated with bacteria called carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae or CRE.

Seven patients were infected and two of them, already seriously ill, died. Here are some questions and answers about CRE.

What is CRE?

CRE refers khổng lồ a family of drug-resistant bacteria. They’ve sầu evolved so that most antibiotics cannot kill them, making them inlớn what are known as superbugs. If they get inkhổng lồ the bloodstream và cause an infection, CRE germs kill half their victims. Other superbugs you may have sầu heard of include MRSA — methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus — and Clostridium difficile or “C diff”.

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How common are they?

Very common. “Each year in the United States, at least 2 million people become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics và at least 23,000 people die each year as a direct result of these infections,” the Centers for Disease Control và Prevention says. On any given day, about 1 in 25 hospital patients has at least one healthcare-associated infection, CDC estimates.

“There were an estimated 722,000 healthcare-associated infections in U.S adễ thương care hospitals in 2011,” CDC says. About 75,000 hospital patients died from these infections.

How vì chưng people catch CRE or other superbugs?

Usually, sadly, in hospitals. These bacteria can take hold in very ill patients whose immune systems cannot fight them off well. Then they get stuông chồng onto lớn equipment such as the endoscopes implicated in the UCLA outbreak. They can work themselves down into nooks và crannies and be very, very difficult lớn clean out.

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Why can’t hospitals bởi something about it?

Many of them are trying, but it’s difficult và expensive to lớn fight bacteria. They’re invisible, they can get inkhổng lồ drains và onkhổng lồ cleaning equipment; they are carried on the hands & clothing of health workers. It requires tedious và time-consuming care to lớn keep them from spreading, including constant sanitizing & hand-washing. The Health và Human Services Department is using a carrot-and-stick approach to lớn try lớn get hospitals to lớn bởi more, by cutting Medicare funding for institutions that fail lớn meet certain goals in cutting infection rates.