First drug-resistant 'superbug' confirmed in US

First drug-resistant 'superbug' confirmed in US
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Antibiotic-resistant bacteria has been discovered for the first time in the U.S., which health officials say could mean the end of the antibiotic era. 

The new strain was confirmed by Department of Defense researchers in an alarming study published Thursday.

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The researchers called it “the emergence of a truly pan-drug resistant bacteria."

The discovery is likely to spark new fears nationwide about the ability to fight normally routine infections without antibiotics. Some experts have said antibiotic resistance poses as big of a risk as terrorism.

The bacteria was found in the urine sample of a 49-year-old woman in Pennsylvania. 

The presence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in the U.S. — which many experts have called inevitable after other strains were discovered in Europe years earlier — will likely force healthcare providers nationwide to begin seeking treatments other than antibiotics for infections. 

Dr. Tom Frieden, the nation’s top disease official, said it could mean “the end of the road” for those types of drugs. He and others have long warned against the overuse of antibiotics, which has helped to breed what are known as “superbugs”

“It basically shows us that the end of the road isn’t very far away for antibiotics — that we may be in a situation where we have patients in our intensive-care units, or patients getting urinary tract infections for which we do not have antibiotics,” Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, told The Washington Post.