…invasive infections, such as a bloodstream infection. These are very serious infections, and they’re very resistant to the antifungal treatments that we have,” she says.
This bug is typically associated with healthcare settings, such as long-term care facilities. “Elderly people can be at high risk for getting this infection,” Dr. Fabre says.
Carbapenem-resistant Acinetobacter is the kind of bacteria that’s really driving antibiotic resistance around the world, according to Fabre.
“The term ‘carbapenem-resistant’ is a red flag,” she says. Carbapenems are a class of very effective antibiotic agents. “We usually reserve these medicines for the most resistant infections, so we are talking about an infection that is resistant to this ‘big gun’ antibiotic,” she says.
“It’s very commonly seen in patients who require respiratory support in the hospital,” Fabre says. “Patients who get this kind of infection have a very high risk of death.”
The three other urgent threats on the CDC list are:
– Clostridioides difficile (C. diff), a bacteria that can cause life-threatening diarrhea and colitis (inflammation of the colon)
– Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, also known as “nightmare bacteria,” which are resistant to nearly all antibiotics
– Drug-resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes the sexually transmitted disease gonorrhea.