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Bacterial infections and their treatment fascinate medical researchers and doctors for the wide range of bacterium that attack or invade humans, and the resistance to the human immune system that they exhibit. Throughout human history bacterial infections have been making individuals sick, and spreading from person to person, yet until recently, bacteria were unknown, and treatment was not available unless we consider ineffective methods such as bloodletting and herbal mixtures placed on the patient that were believed to offer the best chance of recovery for more serious ailments.
It wasn’t until 1674 that a dutchman, Antony van Leeuwenhoek wrote to the Royal Society about his discovery describing numerous small animalcules swimming around in the spit of several people whose plaque he had inspected using one of the first microscopes. The discovery of penicillin in 1928 by Alexander Fleming, and it’s usefulness in the treatment of bacterial infections marked a turning point, and triggered an explosion of research that led to many millions of lives being saved as antibacterials became affordable, and more importantly, proved effective at providing rapid relief and recovery. Antibiotic treatments are categorized using three broad mechanisms, those that inhibit cell wall formation, those that interrupt protein synthesis, and those that inhibit metabolism of the bacteria by preventing DNA synthesis or the permeability of the cell membrane. Treatments for antibiotic infections need to be prescribed by a competent medical professional, who will be able to describe the infection based on professional diagnosis, perhaps backed up with laboratory analysis of blood samples.
Patients should never be tempted to use antibiotic medications without explicit advice from their doctor, it is especially important that older antibiotics that remain from a previous and perhaps different infection are not used because all antibiotics are not created equal.
Medical practitioners over the last 50-60 years have been a little too quick to prescribe antibiotics, in many cases the patient would have recovered without their use, and unfortunately the result is increasing resistance to antibiotic treatment for bacterial infections.
This name Staphylococcus is a Greek word staphyle, meaning a€?bunch of grapesa€?, and kokkos, meaning a€?berrya€?, for this is what staph appears like under the microscope, a a€?bunch of grapesa€? or a€?round little berriesa€?. Staph infections of the skin normally cause localized collections of pus, which are known as boils, abscesses, or furuncles. Staph infections of the skin can also develop to impetigo which is a crusting of the skin or cellulitis which is inflammation of the connective tissue under the skin. When this bacterium enters the blood system and migrates to other organs, numerous severe infections can develop. Staphylococcal pneumonia primarily affects those individuals with underlying diseases of the lungs and can lead to formations of abscess in the lungs. Staph food poisoning is an illness involving the intestines and causes vomiting, nausea, diarrhea and especially dehydration.
Another illness caused by the toxins of Staph aureus is a€?toxic shock syndromea€? where the bacteria develop under conditions which have no or little oxygen.
There are approximately 30 different variety of staph which can infect humans, but most of the infections are caused by Staphylococcus aureus. Staph infections can be as minor as a boil to infections which are antibiotic-resistant to infections which are flesh eating. In approximately half of the cases, however, resistance is seen with all antibiotics even the stronger ones. A staph infection is infectious when the lesion is draining or weeping and if individuals share towels or further personal items that can be contaminated. If a sore develops unusually red or painful, the individual must get medical attention immediately. This website is for informational purposes only and Is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Ear infections are one of the most common reasons parents take their children to the doctor. Too many doctors, and parents, rely on antibiotics for ear infections, despite a woeful lack of evidence for their benefits. Ear infections are common in infants and children, because the Eustachian tubes become easily clogged.
Anything that causes the eustachian tubes to become swollen or blocked causes more fluids to build up in the middle ear behind the eardrum.
Ear infections are also more likely if a child spends a lot of time drinking from a sippy cup or bottle while lying on his or her back.

Use over-the-counter pain relief drops for ears, or ask the doctor about prescription ear drops to relieve pain. If there is no improvement or symptoms get worse, schedule an appointment with your health care provider to determine whether antibiotics are needed. Make sure you or your child takes the antibiotics every day and finishes all the medicine, rather than stopping when symptoms go away. Some children who have repeat infections that seem to go away in between may receive a smaller, daily dose of antibiotics to prevent new infections. If an infection does not go away with the usual medical treatment, or if a child has many ear infections over a short period of time, the doctor may recommend ear tubes. In this procedure, a tiny tube is inserted into the eardrum, keeping open a small hole that allows air to get in so fluids can drain more easily.
If the adenoids are enlarged, surgical removal of the adenoids may be considered, especially if you continue to have ear infections.
Generally, an ear infection is a minor medical problem that gets better without complications.
Fluid can remain behind the eardrums even after the infection has cleared for weeks or even months.. For a child younger than 6 months, let the doctor know right away if the child has a fever, even if no other symptoms are present. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Bacterial classification is important, revealing the identity of an organism so that its behaviour and likely response to treatment can be predicted.
Bacterial cell walls are rigid and protect the organism from differences in osmotic tension between the cell and the environment. We identify microorganisms to predict their pathogenicity: a Staphylococcus aureus isolated from blood is more likely to be causing disease than Staphylococcus epidermidis. The classification systems are helpful, but strains differ in patho-genicity and virulence within a species and there are similarities across species.
Gram-positive cocci are divided into two main groups: the staphylococci (catalase-positive), the major pathogen being S. Gram-negative coccobacilli include the respiratory pathogens Haemophilus and Bordetella and zoonotic agents, such as Brucella and Pasteurella. Gram-negative bacilli (including the family Enterobacteriaceae) form part of the normal flora of humans and animals, and can be found in the environment.
Spiral bacteria include the small gastrointestinal pathogen Helicobacter that colonizes the stomach, leading to gastric and duodenal ulcers and gastric cancer, and Campylobacter spp. Mycoplasma and Chlamydia are responsible for common respiratory and sexually transmitted infections.
Many billions of dollars are invested in finding new treatments for bacterial infections, yet the battle to save life continues as bacteria evolve.
This was the first recorded observation of living bacteria, but sadly treatments remained elusive. Each mechanism is more or less effective against certain types of bacteria, yet all provide an arsenal of techniques for producing bacterial infection treatments.
Women who are pregnant are particularly advised to avoid antibiotic treatments as these could be harmful to the fetus.
The common grouping of bacterial infection treatments under the umbrella term antibiotic does not mean that all antibiotics are the same.
Medications that were effective 10 years ago, or even last year, may no longer be effective, and could be harmful.

While there are different types of ear infections, the most common is called otitis media, which means an inflammation and infection of the middle ear.
For information on an ear infection that lasts a long time or comes and goes, see: Chronic ear infection. However, getting water in the ears will not cause an acute ear infection, unless the eardrum has a hole from a previous episode. You cannot catch an ear infection from someone else, but a cold may spread among children and cause some of them to get ear infections. Other antibiotics that may be given are azithromycin or clarithromycin, cefdinir, cefuroxime, cefpodoxime, amoxicillin clavulanate (Augmentin), clindamycin, or ceftriaxone. Most children will have minor, short-term hearing loss during and right after an ear infection.
This can reduce your child's chances of getting a cold or similar infection, and leads to fewer ear infections.
The pneumococcal vaccine prevents infections from the bacteria that most commonly causes acute ear infections and many respiratory infections. Diagnosis, microbial epidemiology, and antibiotic treatment of acute otitis mediain children: a systematic review. Antibiotic therapy to prevent the development of asymptomatic middle ear effusion in children with acute otitis media: a meta-analysis of individual patient data.
Kaneshiro, MD, MHA, Clinical Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, University of Washington School of Medicine. A licensed medical professional should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Gram-positive cell walls have a thick peptidoglycan layer and a cell membrane, whereas Gram-negative cell walls have three layers: inner and outer membranes, and a thinner peptidoglycan layer.
Escherichia coli that cause urinary tract infections bind to mannose receptors on ureteric epithelial cells by their P fimbriae. It is important to identify organisms that spread widely in the community and cause serious disease, such as Neisseria meningitidis, so that preventative measures can be taken.Bacteria are identified using phenotypic, immunological or molecular characteristics. The sporing types are subdivided into those that are aerobic and those that are anaerobic.Pathogens include Bacillus anthracis, which causes anthrax, and clostridia, which cause pseudomembranous colitis, tetanus and, more rarely, gas gangrene and botulism. If you or your child are prescribed an antibiotic, it is important to finish all your medication as instructed.
The mycobacterial cell wall has a high proportion of lipid, including immunoreactive antigens. Fimbrial antigens are often immunogenic but vary between strains so that repeated infections may occur (e.g.
These may transmit antimicrobial resistance  and may also code for pathogenicity factors. The Leptospira are zoonotic agents that cause an acute meningitis syndrome that may be accompanied by renal failure and hepatitis. However, all children younger than 6 months with an ear infection are treated with antibiotics.
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