In what may be the first, doctors in Germany believe that the gentle washing machine helped to spread the excess of gods to more than a dozen newborns and children in the same hospital – though, fortunately, no one was injured.
Antibiotic resistance has become a major threat to public health over the years and more so than in hospitals. The constant presence of antibiotics, sick patients with a weak immune system and regular bodily contact between people make hospitals the ideal ground for resistance. To combat and monitor the problem, many hospitals around the world now routinely test patients and hospital surfaces for known problem gods.
This is the background of a new case report published Friday in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.
According to a document, routine purification at a children's hospital in West Germany in 2012 found that newborns in an intensive care unit begin to carry a unique strain of resistant bacteria called Klebsiella oxytoca the same embryo is and later in a child placed in a nearby pediatric ward. K. oxytocka versions live harmful to our intestines, but can also cause serious life-threatening infections, especially in hospitals.
Between April 2012 and May 2013, 14 children were colonized with the same superbus. But fortunately, the bacteria did not cause the disease. However, given the potential for serious injuries, doctors began testing their staff and every corner of the hospital could find its source.
The only clear link they found was a washing machine on the same floor as the intensive care unit. The levels of K. oxytoccus in the surfaces of the machine and the water it used was higher than nowhere else. But more importantly, the embryo was also found in knitted caps and socks that were regularly used to warm newborns in these units.
Historically, the washing machines that wash our clothes at high enough temperatures to kill most of the embryo have been used in homes, laundries, and especially hospitals. But more energy efficient machines have begun to lower the water temperature or use less heat during certain cycles. And, as the authors may well understand, the clothes were contaminated with water left on the machine after washing and / or the last rinse cycle, "which passed unheated and non-detergent water through the detergent compartment."  Following their discovery, the hospital switched off the washing machine (along with two water sinks that also contained traces of the overbush). And no other colonized children were subsequently found. But if they were correctly judged, it could have serious consequences for hospitals and other antibiotic resistance beds that have their own washing machines, such as nursing homes.
"If elderly people in need of nursing care with open wounds or bladder catheters or younger people with purulent injuries or infections live in the household, the laundry should be washed at higher temperatures or with effective disinfectants to avoid the transmission of dangerous pathogens, "said senior study author Martin Exner, chairman and director of the Institute for Hygiene and Public Health at the University of Bonn, in a statement published by the American Society for Microbiology. "This is an increasing challenge for hygienists as the number of people receiving care for nurses by family members is steadily increasing."