Are International Travelers Spreading ‘Superbugs’?

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According to the reports recently issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), international travelers may be bringing a bacteria into the United States. The problem with this is that the bacteria is resistant to drugs that are formally used to fight it.

We have been bombarded by news concerning superbug infections as of late. Recently, food safety activists made a push for the Food and Drug Administration to be tougher on poultry farms for using the same antibiotics and promoting an environment that makes bacteria more susceptible to grow resistant to the drugs.

The reports coming from the CDC could bring more light to the problem, helping us to understand the real risks and avoid certain products or activities that could expose us to serious health problems.

The bug that may be being spread because of international travels is called shigella sonnei. The bacteria is yearly responsible for over 500,000 cases of diarrhea in the United States. According to the CDC report, the superbug has infected 243 people in 32 states and Puerto Rico between May 2014 and February 2015. About 90 percent of all cases studied by the CDC involved bacteria that was resistant to the antibiotic ciprofloxacin, the drug most physicians prescribe to patients suffering with shigellosis, which is the infection caused by shigella.

According to the federal agency, most known strains of shigella are drug-resistant. Ciprofloxacin is not the only drug used by physicians to fight the infection.

Experts say this particular bacteria is able to spread quickly. People are usually exposed to the organism in places like nursing homes or childcare facilities. To promote safety and avoid drug-resistant infections, the CDC is investigating the best way to promote awareness. But one of the most important things consumers must keep in mind is that, when traveling internationally, make sure you wash your hands meticulously. International travelers should also be careful about their food and water consumption.

Superbugs are becoming a current trend globally. As organisms grow resistant, more people fall ill as a result. Consumers should be careful and stay on top of the news to learn more about the risks associated with different types of superbugs and the infections they may experience if they are exposed to the organisms.

The full article touching on the subject can be read here. If you ever fall ill due to a bacteria contamination, seeking the attention of a medical professional is imperative.

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