Deadly bacterial infections resistent to even the strongest antibiotics are on the rise in U.S. hospitals, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The bacteria, normally found in the gut, offers a "limited window of opportuntity" to halt its spread and can cause untreatable illnesses when it invades parts of the body like the bloodstream, lungs or urinary tract. The death rate from bloodstream infections can reach 50 percent.
Forty-two states have had cases of these bacterial infections. About 4 percent of short-stay hospitals reported such infections in the first half of 2012 nationwide, but the rate was much higher - 18 percent - among long-term acute-care hospitals, which treat people who need ventilators for a long time or who have other chronic problems.
The disease centers recommend ruthless scrubbing of all surfaces and relentless handwashing to stop the infections from spreading, but hospitals are also urged to isolate infected patients with dedicated-care teams and equipment. Read the full details here:
The CDC is becoming increasingly concerned about infections which are not effectively stopped by any currently used antibiotics. An epidemic is possible if these infections spread beyond the walls of nursing homes, hospitals, and other physicians' offices to cause infection that lead to death.
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