Whilst recurrent bacterial infections are still rather lightly dismissed as insignificant, they actually create an extremely difficult situation for sufferers, mostly women, as the cycle of reinfection means time off work, school, college, increasing pain and psychological distress as further attacks can appear suddenly interrupting daily life from anywhere between days to months.
Patients take their antibiotic, feel better, get sick again, blame the antibiotic or dose levels and switch to another, only to find that this too fails.
This is happening so frequently that some researchers have referred to this as a problem of epidemic proportions: a silent epidemic.
Occasionally, Ecoli makes the headlines, as clusters of outbreaks cause serious, scary and even deadly examples to be highlighted and a particular strain of Ecoli is regarded as deviant and out of the ordinary.
In December 2010 til July 2011, 250 victims - 100 of them under 16 - were affected by E coli O157 Of those, 74 needed hospital treatment, including four who developed a rare digestive disorder which can lead to kidney failure in children. One patient died. This outbreak affected 193 people in England, 44 in Scotland and 14 in Wales. While 40% of the 250 were under-16s, 69% were female.
The studies on this strain ended in a government recommendation to wash leeks and sacked potatoes thoroughly and wash hands before and after when preparing food. Good advice indeed with all raw food.
But the silent large scale epidemic that is not highlighted is more likely to have a connection with meat.
There are many studies now that make the link between chickens and human infections of the bladder (more so than with pork or beef). Antibiotic use in agriculture and drug-resistant organisms that could cross to humans either in the environment or directly via meat, although not conclusive does suggest one possible source that all non-vegetarians share and can do something about.
Besser, the superbug specialist, recommends that kitchens be kept clean. Knives, forks, and plates that have come into contact with chicken should be handled very carefully indeed.
Read more: www.nydailynews.com
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