Klebsiella pneumoniae is a rod shaped type of bacteria commonly found in the normal flora of the mouth, skin, and intestines.
K. pneumoniae can in turn cause an infection called klebsiella pneumonia. This can provoke lung inflammation and cell death that may produce a thick, bloody, mucoid sputum. This often happens after the bacteria migrate from their normal place of resting to the lower respiratory tract. (For more on this see the questions below)
The KPC superbug arises when the Klebsiella bacteria become resistant to the carbapenem drugs often used to treat them. These drug resistant bacteria are called Carbapenemases. They are active in other bacteria beside Klebsiella and this resistance group are sometimes referred to as Carbapenem Resistant En (CRE)
Different types of KPC exist around the world and are most often seen in hospital patients with compromised immune systems and significant exposure to hospital infections. They have spread around the USA in the last 10 years and often have a foothold in long term care facilities.
They have gained media attention since September 2012 because of the interest in the battle that the National Insitute of Health experienced in uprooting the infection from their state of the art facility and the many deaths that have occurred from one single outbreak. KPC and CRE are considered to be among the most potent threats to public health in the world at this time. They threaten to turn formerly treatable infections into life ending challenges.
See our KPC superbug guide below
- KPC News – Daily Updates
- How is the KPC superbug treated
- What are KPC superbug symptoms
- What is Klebsiella Pneumonia?
- What is the KPC superbug?
The latest news on carbapenemases is below. You can sign up for our weekday newsletter here
- CDC awards more than $14 million to antibiotic resistance projects
- Non-molecular detection of carbapenemases in Enterobacteriaceae clinical isolates. - PubMed - NCBI
- The Use of a Combination Antibiogram to Assist with the Selection of Appropriate Antimicrobial Therapy for Carbapenemase-Producing Enterobacteriace... - PubMed - NCBI
- Breaking the chain of infection – hygiene is everyone’s responsibility | Reflections on Infection Prevention and Control
- Distribution of carbapenem resistance mechanisms in Pseudomonas aeruginosa isolates among hospitalised children in Poland: Characterisation of two ... - PubMed - NCBI
- Impact of a pharmacist-driven beta-lactam allergy interview on inpatient antimicrobial therapy: A pilot project. - PubMed - NCBI
- Evaluation of apramycin activity against carbapenem-resistant and -susceptible strains of Enterobacteriaceae. - PubMed - NCBI
- Implementing a Comprehensive Endoscope Reprocessing Program - Infection Control Today
- Counting the cost of an outbreak of carbapenemase-producing Enterobacteriaceae: an economic evaluation from a hospital perspective. - PubMed - NCBI
- Current State of Resistance to Antibiotics of Last-Resort in South Africa: A Review from a Public Health Perspective. - PubMed - NCBI
- Status Epilepticus and Delirium Associated with Ertapenem in a Very Elderly Patient with Chronic Kidney Disease and Silent Ischaemic Cerebrovascula... - PubMed - NCBI
- Research Shows Post-Surgical Infection Is A Very Real Threat
- Revealed: How dirty production of NHS drugs helps create superbugs - The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
- Factory farming practices are under scrutiny again in N.C. after disastrous hurricane floods
- Effect of high N-acetylcysteine concentrations on antibiotic activity against a large collection of respiratory pathogens.