APR 11, 2019 4:24 PM PDT

Drug-resistant Candida Auris is Spreading

WRITTEN BY: Tiffany Dazet

A drug-resistant fungal yeast, Candida auris, is spreading throughout hospitals worldwide. Deemed “an urgent threat” by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), C. auris has infected more than 600 people in the United States as of March 29, 2019. Most of these cases were reported in the New York City, New Jersey, and Chicago areas. Cases of C. auris infections have been reported from multiple countries including Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Russia, Pakistan, and many more. It’s suspected that some of the cases in the U.S. came from patients who had recent stays in healthcare facilities in select countries abroad.

The first official case of C. auris was reported in Japan in 2009. According to the CDC, C. auris is resistant to multiple antifungal drugs that are commonly used to treat Candida infections making infections difficult to treat and deadly. The CDC estimates that more than 90% of C. auris infections are resistant to at least one type of drug, while 30% are resistant to two or more drugs. 

While drug-resistant microbes aren’t unheard of, the way that C. auris is transmitted was shocking to medical providers. Typical Candida infections don’t spread from patient to patient; however, C. auris was found to remain on skin and surfaces for extensive periods of time. Extreme precautions must be taken to prevent the spread of the infection, and once exposed hospital rooms and equipment must be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected with specific materials recommended by the CDC. 

The rise of C. auris infections has been seen in healthcare settings, due to the reasons listed above. In addition to its resistant to anti-fungal drugs and transmission, it impacts those with weakened immune systems and infections are commonly reported in wounds, bloodstreams, and ears. A study published last year in Emerging Infectious Diseases documented how deadly and invasive C. auris can be in a healthcare setting. Of 51 cases in New York from 2016 to 2018, nearly half of the patients died within 90 days of being diagnosed with C. auris infections. The threat of C. auris infecting healthy individuals is very low.

Sources: The New York Times, Forbes, CDC
 

About the Author
  • Tiffany grew up in Southern California, where she attended San Diego State University. She graduated with a degree in Biology with a marine emphasis, thanks to her love of the ocean and wildlife. With 13 years of science writing under her belt, she now works as a freelance writer in the Pacific Northwest.
You May Also Like
SEP 27, 2020
Cell & Molecular Biology
How Spiders May Open a Path to IBS Treatment
SEP 27, 2020
How Spiders May Open a Path to IBS Treatment
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is term that describes a gut disorder that causes abdominal pain, cramping, diarrhea or c ...
SEP 28, 2020
Cancer
A New Transcriptomics Program in the Works Glioma Diagnosis
SEP 28, 2020
A New Transcriptomics Program in the Works Glioma Diagnosis
The future of medicine is “personalized healthcare.” However, testing remains a critical hurdle researcher&r ...
SEP 29, 2020
Cardiology
Improving Acute Myocardial Ischemia Treatment with Nitro Fatty Acids
SEP 29, 2020
Improving Acute Myocardial Ischemia Treatment with Nitro Fatty Acids
Acute myocardial ischemia occurs when blood flow is restricted in the heart. This usually leads to cardiovascular issues ...
OCT 05, 2020
Health & Medicine
Cannabis Chemotherapy Trial Shows Encouraging Phase II Results
OCT 05, 2020
Cannabis Chemotherapy Trial Shows Encouraging Phase II Results
Even with the best anti-nausea medications one in three patients receiving chemotherapy experiences vomiting, and about ...
OCT 09, 2020
Cannabis Sciences
Older Adults Use Cannabis for Common Health Problems
OCT 09, 2020
Older Adults Use Cannabis for Common Health Problems
Researchers from the University of California San Diego have found that older adults tend to use cannabis for medical pu ...
OCT 12, 2020
Cardiology
Pig Hearts Might be Used in Human Transplants by the End of 2021
OCT 12, 2020
Pig Hearts Might be Used in Human Transplants by the End of 2021
A major problem in the transplant field is a lack of healthy donor organs. For many years, scientists in the field of re ...
Loading Comments...