Antibiotics

Effect Measure

Category archives for Antibiotics

Salmonella is an enteric pathogen that causes quite a lot of foodborne illness. I learned there were several species of Salmonella bacteria of which the cause of typhoid fever was called Salmonella typi. Spread via food and water it used to kill a lot of people in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Nowadays all…

The National Pork Producers Council didn’t like swine flu being called swine flu. Bad for business. So we now call it 2009 H1N1 or some such thing. It’s totally swine-origin, but hey, if Lord Agribusiness doesn’t like it, that’s that. Same thing with antibiotic resistant bacteria, like methicillin resistant Staphylococcus aureus (“MRSA”; best source on…

Orgies and antibiotic resistance

When a small body of water, say a slow flowing creek or water in a drainage ditch, “goes septic” it starts to stink, often giving off a rotten egg odor (hydrogen sulfide, H2S). This isn’t a sign that the water is polluted in the chemical sense of toxic materials. It means that so much organic…

Swine and MRSA

The peanut butter/peanut paste ingredient based salmonella outbreak has been in the news lately and we’ve discussed it here (and here, here, here, here, here). There are now about 500 reported cases and six deaths. That’s a case fatality ratio of just over 1%. So what if there were a disease outbreak of 100,000 cases…

Antibiotic resistant bugs at the beach

Most people know that a good place to pick up an antibiotic resistant infection is in a hospital. Lots of pathogenic bugs there living (often) happily in a sea of antimicrobial agents. Better to stay away from hospitals, somewhere nice. But apparently, not at the beach:

Suppose you were a cattle dealer and the US Food and Drug Administration, one of the federal agencies tasked with keep the food supply safe issued you a court order, twice, prohibiting you from putting your product into the food supply until you complied with a legally required record keeping system. The agency had their…

MRSA and agribusiness

Suppose US agribusiness food animals were being fed a poison that killed a few tens of thousands of Americans a year. Would we want them to stop? Maybe we weren’t sure but had more than ample grounds for suspicion. Would we want scientists and the government to be looking into it and maybe even halting…

Listening to the earache vaccine

If you have or have had small children you may be all too familiar with earaches. When our kids were small we felt as if we were single-handedly supporting the amoxicillin makers. A major cause of middle ear infection is the organism Streptococcus pneumoniae (S. pneumoniae), which sometimes it invades other tissues and causes bacterial…

TB on a plane. Checking the evidence.

What do we know about transmission of tuberculosis on an airplane? Not much, apparently. There is very little literature on it and not a single case of active TB has ever been traced to an airplane contact. On the other hand, it isn’t very easy to estimate the risks. The only way you can do…

When children die from flu

We know that the burden of mortality of seasonal influenza falls mainly on the older population but also can kill children and infants. In 2004 CDC started the Influenza-Associated Pediatric Mortality Surveillance System, itself part of a larger notifiable disease system. Its aim was to find out more about the pattern of influenza deaths in…