The United States and the world continue to lose ground on antibiotic resistance, according to a new report issued this week by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And among other things, the number of superbugs, which pose a serious threat to the health of Americans, has only increased over the past half decade.
In 2013, CDC i brought the first ever report on antibiotic-resistant infections in the United States. He gave a conservative estimate of how often these infections infect and kill Americans every year, as well as being listed by a rogue gallery of resistant fungi and bacteria that are becoming common problems. These germs were ranked by threat level from Emergency. The CDC then estimated that more than 2 million people in the United States are infected with these infections annually, while at least 23,000 die as a result.
"This report should raise concerns for all those affected by the protection and improvement of health from infectious diseases. Even though his focus is on the United States, the findings will resonate around the world, "said Tim Jinks, head of the UK's Wellcome Trust's drug-resistant research program, in a statement to Gizmodo.
The CDC report comes on the heels of a report by similarly depressing a report by Canadian experts, published this week. He found that 26 percent of infections suffered by Canadians each year are opposed to the front antibiotics used to treat them – and that number could rise to 40 percent by 2050.
Two new infections have been added to the emergency list of the 2013 CDC for resistance to infections: durable mushroom type called Candida auris ( C. auris ) and Carbapenem resistant Acinetobacter bacteria and 19459008 bacteria and 19459008 which are often harmless to healthy people but dangerous to hospital patients. These infections join the Clostridioides difficile ( C. Difficile ), a group of bacteria called Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE) and drug-resistant Neisseria gonorrhea which causes sexually transmitted gonorrhea.
Of these emergency infections, C. difficile is thought to cause the lion's share of harm, with 223 900 being the predicted cases in hospitalized patients along with 12,800 deaths per year (CDC report is even dedicated to the families of the people killed by C. difficile) but there is also a CRE, given the charming nickname of " nightmares " because many infections already oppose almost every available antibiotic used against him. Gonorrhea is also on the short list of bacteria that may soon become resistant to any previous medicines we have for this.
In addition to the risk categories included in the 2013 report, the 2019 version now also added a "Watch List" of potential threats. These include strains of the fungus Aspergillus fumigatus azole-resistant antifungal, resistant Mycoplasma genitalium other sexually transmitted diseases, and resistant bacteria and causes whooping cough or whooping cough (unlike most bugs on the list, there is an effective childhood vaccine for the disease, but people can lose their immunity to it faster than we thought).
"The report reiterates that this is not a problem – that we should always be vigilant because it is changing," said Katie Tellington, director of the antibiotic resistance project at Pew Charitable Trusts, told Gizmodo over the phone.
Talkington noted that the United States has made little progress in combating the risk factors that promote antibiotic resistance.
In 2017, for example, the Food and Drug Administration introduced restrictions on the use of antibiotics for livestock, such as the mandatory signing of any use by a veterinarian. Following the new rules, sales of antibiotics for livestock have apparently decreased although the latest figures will not be available until the end of this year. Most hospitals in the United States have also implemented management programs designed to reduce the over-prescription of outpatient and pediatric antibiotics, and there is evidence that prescribing rates have decreased in both groups in recent years.
But the grim truth is that these small victories are just that . The rapid use of antibiotics continues unhindered in many areas of the world. And the development of new antibiotics and other therapies that can treat resistant infections has slowed to a crawl, as many pharmaceutical companies have decided to abandon antibiotic studies entirely because of lack of profitability. And while governments and private organizations have created new funding models that are beginning to persuade some companies to do antibiotic research, it is unclear whether these efforts will be timely or big enough for things to stand.
"We have succeeded in the past. In the early '80s, we had the heyday of the development of antibiotics, and we were able to keep it going, "said Thallington. "We still have the capacity and ability to do it today, but we need political will and adequate resources – because right now we are losing the battle."
There is no immediate future where antibiotics stop working on all infections. But our lives and those of our loved ones will change for the worse, long before we reach this point. Everything from birth to receiving a life-saving transplant depends on antibiotics to keep people safe. Without significant advances in antibiotic resistance in the coming years, we no longer need to suffer and die .