Resistant germs prevalent in nursing homes

April 13, 2009 at 12:30 PM   |   Comments

BOSTON, April 13 (UPI) -- Residents of nursing homes are one of the main reservoirs of anti-microbial resistant bacteria, U.S. researchers said.

Study leader Dr. Erin' O'Fallon, a geriatrician at Hebrew Rehabilitation Center and a research fellow in medicine at Harvard Medical School in Boston said that the prevalence of a certain form of drug-resistant bacteria -- multidrug-resistant gram-negative organisms -- far surpassed that of two other common antimicrobial-resistant infections in long-term care facilities.

"Recently, it has become apparent that multidrug resistance among gram-negative bacteria is becoming an even greater problem in these facilities, with nearly half of long-term care facility residents harboring multidrug-resistant gram-negative bacteria," the researchers said in a statement.

Infection from multidrug-resistant gram-negative organisms can lead to toxins in the bloodstream that cause inflammation and destroy healthy tissue and if left untreated, these infections can be fatal, O'Fallon said.

The researchers used more than 1,660 clinical cultures of urine, blood and wound specimens obtained from residents at a large, urban long-term care facility. The researchers found 180 cases of multidrug-resistant gram-negative organisms compared to 104 cases of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureas and 11 cases of vancomycin-resistant enterococci.

Of further concern was the steady rise in multidrug-resistant gram-negative organisms over the two-year study period, which increased from 7 percent the first year to 13 percent in the last year, the study said.

The findings were published in the Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences.

© 2009 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Featured UPI Collection
Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Celebrity Couples of 2014 [PHOTOS]

Most Popular
New research explains insomnia prevalence among elderly
Yoga guru BKS Iyengar dies at 95
New research details rare cancer that killed Bob Marley
New data shows Melbourne is most well-rested city in the world
Daughters more likely than sons to care for elder parents
Trending News