Superbug menace: ST shows you some of these superbugs

Superbug menace
Drug-resistant superbugs include methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a type of staph infection that is difficult to treat. A local study done between 2015 and 2016 found that the majority of patients who caught superbugs at 13 acute hospitals in Singapore were infected with MRSA. PHOTO: ISTOCKPHOTO

The super fungus Candida auris has spread globally, and there have been 11 known infections in Singapore since 2012. But it is just one of many multidrug-resistant superbugs lurking in hospitals and nursing homes - and climate change could release more lethal viruses and bacteria trapped in ice. Shabana Begum shows you some of these superbugs.

The short, pellet-shaped bacterium was originally found in soil and water, but has made its way into the intensive care units of hospitals which house vulnerable patients with low immunity. A. baumannii targets moist tissues, such as mucus membranes and broken skin. Infected areas of the skin will resemble the skin of an orange before turning into blisters.

If left untreated, the infection can lead to blood poisoning and death. The bacterium is also notorious for infecting military personnel injured in the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on April 13, 2019, with the headline 'Superbug menace'. Print Edition | Subscribe