Staph fatalities may exceed AIDS deaths

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Quigley_Sharps, Oct 16, 2007.

  1. Quigley_Sharps

    Quigley_Sharps The Badministrator Administrator Founding Member

    CHICAGO - More than 90,000 Americans get potentially deadly infections each year from a drug-resistant staph "superbug," the government reported Tuesday in its first overall estimate of invasive disease caused by the germ.

    Deaths tied to these infections may exceed those caused by AIDS, said one public health expert commenting on the new study. The report shows just how far one form of the staph germ has spread beyond its traditional hospital setting.

    The overall incidence rate was about 32 invasive infections per 100,000 people. That's an "astounding" figure, said an editorial in Wednesday's Journal of the American Medical Association, which published the study.

    Most drug-resistant staph cases are mild skin infections. But this study focused on invasive infections — those that enter the bloodstream or destroy flesh and can turn deadly.

    Researchers found that only about one-quarter involved hospitalized patients. However, more than half were in the health care system — people who had recently had surgery or were on kidney dialysis, for example. Open wounds and exposure to medical equipment are major ways the bug spreads.

    In recent years, the resistant germ has become more common in hospitals and it has been spreading through prisons, gyms and locker rooms, and in poor urban neighborhoods.

    The new study offers the broadest look yet at the pervasiveness of the most severe infections caused by the bug, called methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA. These bacteria can be carried by healthy people, living on their skin or in their noses.

    An invasive form of the disease is being blamed for the death Monday of a 17-year-old Virginia high school senior. Doctors said the germ had spread to his kidneys, liver, lungs and muscles around his heart.

    The researchers' estimates are extrapolated from 2005 surveillance data from nine mostly urban regions considered representative of the country. There were 5,287 invasive infections reported that year in people living in those regions, which would translate to an estimated 94,360 cases nationally, the researchers said.

    Most cases were life-threatening bloodstream infections. However, about 10 percent involved so-called flesh-eating disease, according to the study led by researchers at the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    There were 988 reported deaths among infected people in the study, for a rate of 6.3 per 100,000. That would translate to 18,650 deaths annually, although the researchers don't know if MRSA was the cause in all cases.

    If these deaths all were related to staph infections, the total would exceed other better-known causes of death including AIDS — which killed an estimated 17,011 Americans in 2005 — said Dr. Elizabeth Bancroft of the Los Angeles County Health Department, the editorial author.

    The results underscore the need for better prevention measures. That includes curbing the overuse of antibiotics and improving hand-washing and other hygiene procedures among hospital workers, said the CDC's Dr. Scott Fridkin, a study co-author.

    Some hospitals have drastically cut infections by first isolating new patients until they are screened for MRSA.

    The bacteria don't respond to penicillin-related antibiotics once commonly used to treat them, partly because of overuse. They can be treated with other drugs but health officials worry that their overuse could cause the germ to become resistant to those, too.

    A survey earlier this year suggested that MRSA infections, including noninvasive mild forms, affect 46 out of every 1,000 U.S. hospital and nursing home patients — or as many as 5 percent. These patients are vulnerable because of open wounds and invasive medical equipment that can help the germ spread.

    Dr. Buddy Creech, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University, said the JAMA study emphasizes the broad scope of the drug-resistant staph "epidemic," and highlights the need for a vaccine, which he called "the holy grail of staphylococcal research."

    The regions studied were: the Atlanta metropolitan area; Baltimore, Connecticut; Davidson County, Tenn.; the Denver metropolitan area; Monroe County, NY; the Portland, Ore. metropolitan area; Ramsey County, Minn.; and the San Francisco metropolitan area.
  2. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    What color ribbon are we supposed to wear for this?
  3. Tracy

    Tracy Insatiably Curious Moderator Founding Member

    She (the infection) is called "Mrs. A", and I hear she's a Bitch.
  4. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Nope...nothing funny about her...and she is a real bitch....

    I had it last year..and 3 subsequent surgeries..

    Was on Bactrim and Bactroban for almost 12 mos afterwards......

    There is also VRSA now...Vancomycin Resistant Staph...

    Scary stuff...and I was sick as He11...Got it from hugging a friend that had just got out of the hospital...I had a cut that hadn't healed over yet...and he showed up at a Buffett show AMA from a hospital in Tennessee.... last year...apparently he had staph, and it became MRSA in me....Was misdiagnosed several times and biopsied....Finally when they sent me to an infectious disease specialist, I was diagnosed properly and the subsequent surgeries to take all the infection out....

    In today's news....

    BEDFORD, Virginia (AP) -- A high school student who was hospitalized for more than a week with an antibiotic-resistant staph infection has died, and officials shut down 21 schools for cleaning to keep the illness from spreading.
    Ashton Bonds, 17, a senior at Staunton River High School, died Monday after he was found to have Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, his mother said.
    "I want people to know how sick it made my son," Veronica Bonds said.

    Rest of the story here:

    What really surprises me is how many people I know that have been affected by this....and how it changed their life....

    No ribbons for this one....It just is.
  5. Blackjack

    Blackjack Monkey+++

    Why doesn't the gov declare war on MRSA instead of Iraq or drugs?

    "MRSA is responsible for 94,000 serious infections and nearly 19,000 deaths per year in the United States. These numbers would make MRSA responsible for more deaths each year than AIDS".

    Seems if you want to save American lives, this would be a good place to start.
  6. CRC

    CRC Survivor of Tidal Waves | RIP 7-24-2015 Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Apparently , Stress is a huge factor in MRSA's recurring in people....Between work, my cat being torn up by a half pit, and a half rotty...and my Dad...Well, yeah, I guess I've been under some stress??? Don't really know because I kind of let things roll off me and laugh about things....

    And I have it , yet again. Dammit.

    Caught it very early this time ...On Bactrim and Doxyclycline...

    I think I'm going to have Clorox piped in with my water...and paint my house with Hibiclens....

    Every time I read a story about someone dying from this, it just makes me angry....
  7. Tracy

    Tracy Insatiably Curious Moderator Founding Member

    One of our family friends has VRSA.

    Very, very sick - hospitalized. Not doing well, not well at all.
  8. SLugomist

    SLugomist Monkey++

    need to let diseases run their course. Making drugs for them is like holding back a flood with a sponge. They will get through just a matter of time and the longer you hold it back the worse it will be.
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