E.coli is now killing more than twice as many people as MRSA and Clostridium difficile combined, so the price of any further inaction will be measured in human lives.
Escherichia coli (also known as E. coli) is a gram-negative, anaerobic, rod-shaped, coliform bacterium found in the lower intestine. E.Coli is our friend, but only in the right place, the gut.
The Government’s chief medical officer, Dame Sally Davies has stated unequivocally that;
Antimicrobial resistance poses a catastrophic threat. If we don’t act now, any one of us could go into hospital in 20 years for minor surgery and die because of an ordinary infection that can’t be treated with antibiotics.
E.coli in the bladder causes serious bladder infections. As early as 2010 the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System in the USA reported that more than 75 percent of chicken and turkey meat sold in retail was contaminated with E.coli and that many of these bacteria were resistant to multiple antibiotics. A separate 2011 study based on this data reported that more than one-fifth of E.coli found on poultry meat was of the type that can—if ingested when food is not cooked properly—migrate from the gut and cause serious infections such as UTIs.
In the past, poor personal hygiene has sometimes been blamed for repeat bladder infections and historically, antibiotics hastily prescribed, along with lectures on bottom wiping, cleanliness and sexual abstinence. However, these days much more is understood about cystitis, and UTIs and research suggest that repeat infections are the result of bacteria surviving antibiotic therapy because of resistance and that the overuse of antibiotics generally in farming and medicine created is the cause of that resistance.
Fleming knew himself how dangerous overuse of antibiotics could be. In an interview shortly after winning the Nobel Prize in 1945 for discovering penicillin, Fleming said:
The thoughtless person playing with penicillin treatment is morally responsible for the death of the man who succumbs to infection with the penicillin-resistant organism.
We now know that cystitis-causing bacteria become increasingly immune to antibiotics. Research shows that surviving bacteria can lay dormant behind a protective biofilm, just waiting to be reactivated during intimacy, or when the urine acidity increases, or during exercise or travelling etc. or when your immune system is weakened through illness, stress or fatigue.
Bacterial biofilms play an important role in urinary tract infections (UTIs), being responsible for persistent infections, causing relapses and acute prostatitis.
Sweet Cures ’ Anna talks about her battle with cystitis. Read More