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Superbug Brought Back By Iraq War Casualties

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posted on Nov, 8 2006 @ 04:20 AM
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A multi-resistant Superbug has been cropping up in both British and American hospitals and is being linked to injured soldiers returning from Iraq. At one hospital in Birmingham, the bacteria is reported to have infected 93 people, 91 of them civilians. Thirty-five died, although the hospital was not able to establish whether the superbug was a contributory factor.
 



news.independent.co.uk
"A multi-resistant strain of A. baumannii known as the 'T strain' has been isolated from casualties returning to the UK from Iraq," the Health minister Andy Burnham said in a Commons written answer.

He said the exact source of the infection had not been identified but US casualties returning to America had also been found to be carrying the superbug.

Experts in microbiology who were studying the links between the infection and those wounded in Iraq, said an injured soldier thought to have caught the infection in Iraq may have caused a large outbreak of the superbug in an intensive care unit in an NHS hospital in south-east England.



Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


I was very concerned when I first heard of this. Why aren't these soldiers being treated in military hospitals instead of civilian? I think this just adds insult to the already injurious and lack of proper planning for the troops that are giving their 'all' (and lives) in the name of freedom.

Related News Links:
www.timesonline.co.uk




posted on Nov, 8 2006 @ 08:59 AM
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Good find.


Wonder if that super-bug was created by all the vaccinations and shots soldiers get before they head out?

Looks like it probably was.




posted on Nov, 8 2006 @ 10:15 AM
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shows the date of the last outbreak as November 2004

A. baumannii - CDC Report


Looks like it's happening again. It's a nasty one too and very resistant to antibiotic therapies.



posted on Nov, 8 2006 @ 08:55 PM
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Well if it's gotten past all the militaries vaccinations and antibiotics then I suppose we'll need to quarantine this one and let it burn out while offering what treatment we can to those already infected. Although on the other hand this suggests that there's probably a larger problem in Iraq than just violence, so we may want to keep our eyes on this one.



posted on Nov, 8 2006 @ 09:06 PM
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Originally posted by JohnnyAnonymous

I was very concerned when I first heard of this. Why aren't these soldiers being treated in military hospitals instead of civilian? I think this just adds insult to the already injurious and lack of proper planning for the troops that are giving their 'all' (and lives) in the name of freedom.


The military hospitals aren't being used at present. The reason given is that the medical staff get more experience and have access to more services/equipment working in regular hospitals, and since that's where the staff are, that's where the patients are sent.

I can see the logic in this, but it also means the soldiers often don't get the extra specialist care they need.. the PTSD treatment and monitoring, the cameradie and support they would get by being amongst people who share and understand their experience, and general social and welfare support they should really deserve given the sacrifices they've made.


[edit on 8-11-2006 by nowthenlookhere]



posted on Nov, 9 2006 @ 09:42 AM
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Originally posted by cyberdude78

Well if it's gotten past all the militaries vaccinations and antibiotics




Things like this don't "get past" vaccinations and antibiotics - exposures to such drugs actually create resistant microbes.


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posted on Nov, 9 2006 @ 11:00 AM
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More on how antibiotics create antibiotic resistant bacteria - and how the USA is ignoring the problem.



Europe is killing off hospital infections. Why isn't the United States following suit?

If you are an American admitted to a hospital in Amsterdam, Toronto, or Copenhagen these days, you'll be considered a biohazard. Doctors and nurses will likely put you into quarantine while they determine whether you're carrying methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a deadly organism that is increasingly common stateside, especially in our hospitals. And if you test positive for methicillin-resistant staph, or MRSA, these European and Canadian hospital workers will don protective gloves, masks, and gowns each time they approach you, and then strip off the gear and scrub down vigorously when they leave your room. The process is known as "search and destroy"—a combat mission that hospitals abroad are undertaking to prevent the spread of germs that resist antibiotics. Our own health authorities, meanwhile, have been strangely reluctant to join the assault.

In the United States, MRSA kills an estimated 13,000 people every year, which means that a hospital patient is 10 times as likely to die of MRSA as an inmate is to be murdered in prison. The latest survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 64 percent of the Staphylococcus-aureus strains in American hospitals were MRSA—that is, resistant to the powerful antibiotic methicillin and other antibiotics—which makes them difficult to treat. MRSA has also spread to the general public, afflicting football teams and schools in the last three years. I know a healthy 5-year-old who got a staph infection recently after she skinned her knee on the playground. She ended up requiring two full months of antibiotic treatment, while her mother scoured the house with bleach on doctor's orders. And she may not be rid of the bug yet.

Given the dimensions of the threat, you'd think that the CDC would be making a priority of fighting it. After all, federal health agencies have spent billions to fight anthrax (which caused five deaths in 2001), smallpox (last U.S. death: 1949), and pandemic flu (yet to appear in the United States). And there is reason to think that search and destroy works, since health-care authorities abroad have kept rates of antibiotic-resistant bugs in their countries much lower than ours. In Dutch hospitals, the rate of MRSA is less than 1 percent. Canada's rate is 10 percent. And more than 100 studies have shown the effectiveness of search and destroy, including work released in the last month in the United States.





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