Scary Facts about Antibiotics

What is indisputable is that the status quo is untenable. An estimated 48,000 people die in Europe and the U.S. each year from infections caused by antibiotic-resistant bacteria, and this number is very likely to increase in years to come. “This is a global issue and a moral issue that needs to be dealt with in collaboration,” says Otto Cars, of the Swedish Institute for Communicable Disease Control in Solna.

From Nature Medicine via Kevin Outterson.

Comments (17)

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  1. Jimbino says:

    Not only that, but broad-spectrum antibiotics kill off your beneficial bacteria and make way for infection by such things as candida albicans.

  2. Linda Gorman says:

    A moral issue?

    What the heck does that mean? Denying antibiotics to countries that don’t control use properly? Confining people prescribed antibiotics until they take the entire dose? Requiring hospital ICUs to rotate the antibiotics they use? Locking up pharmaceutical company CEOs until they figure out new drugs?

    Right now, the health care payment systems haven’t rewarded drug research in antibiotics for decades, and the bugs are winning.

    It would be so nice to have public health officials just state the problem as they see it and suggest some proposed solutions. Instead, they give us drama and call for moral crusades.

    • Hector E says:

      I second your comment, adding that governments are disincentivizing research and blame pharmaceutical companies for the rise of sicknesses. If we continue down this path, we will end up in the dark ages, where medicine and technology cannot deal with diseases.

  3. Thomas says:

    “…this number is very likely to increase in years to come.”

    It will most definitely increase as time progresses. We are becoming increasingly resistant, with no back up plan or second option once current anti-biotics are rendered useless.

  4. Matthew says:

    Could continue to get worse if people continue to not vaccinate their children as well.

  5. Zimmer says:

    No antibiotic, no, no, no!!!

  6. Paulsen R says:

    There is a strong push for Socialism in the world. In many countries across the world there is resentment against capitalism, as people start thinking in the common good. This is what the researcher is saying. There is a moral issue in the industry, because some are making money and others are dying. The researcher is calling for lower margins to the pharmaceuticals (which he acknowledge have a disincentive to produce antibiotics) and more access to antibiotics. He talks that there is a moral issue in the market, and that might be so, but he is suggesting solving it with one worse.

    • Eisenhower says:

      Really? I think capitalism has defeated socialism as the Soviet Union no longer exists.

      • Paulsen R says:

        The Soviet Union, contradicting their name, was Communist, not a Socialist state. Communism forces everyone to have the same things, rations food, income and other basic necessities. The government provides everything given that you give everything to the state. Socialism is different. It is a sort of mixture between capitalism and communism, in which you have liberty and freedom to do whatever you want. If you want to work hard and be rich, you are allowed, and will be taxed severely. If you decide to layoff and do nothing, the government will provide you with everything you need. Communism died when the USSR fell apart, although there still some remnants (Cuba and North Korea) and the Pseudo-Communism in China. Socialism on the other hand has exponentially bloomed since then. Today is the common ideology of the European countries. Countries such as Norway, Sweden and Finland are Socialists. Even France, Spain and Germany have systems strongly similar to the socialist ideology. Socialism is on the rise and soon will be the dominant political system. It hasn’t become the ruling system because; it is mistakenly associated with the Soviet Union, just as you did.

        • Eisenhower says:

          A thorough explanation. “Today is the common ideology of the European countries. Countries such as Norway, Sweden and Finland are Socialists. Even France, Spain and Germany have systems strongly similar to the socialist ideology.” I agree with this statement. China is actually learning from these countries even though they claim themselves as “Socialism with Chinese characteristics”, a combination of state-led capitalism and communism.