Thursday, October 18, 2007

What We Really Need to Be Afraid Of

As a Mom, living in this day and age has not been easy. Yes, we have the modern conveniences that technology has brought us. We can microwave our dinners in 60 seconds, keep track of our kids activities by cell phones, keep up on the latest news and fads and shop at the drop of a hat via the internet but we also live in an age where we have to be concerned about identity theft, pedophiles lurking in our children's chat rooms, terrorists attacking our country and superbug infections that can kill us.

Since my oldest son had his spleen out, I have had great concern about his health and well being. Contrary to what some people may think, the spleen is not like having your appendix out. There are consequences to having no spleen, the main one being, a compromised immune system. My son is much more susceptible to bacterial infections now and it can overwhelm his system and kill him.

Yesterday, I just heard a classmate of my son's had contracted the deadly MRSA bacteria ( a staph bacteria that has multi resistance to many of the antibiotics out there) while he was in basic training to become a marine. He is now lying in a hospital fighting for his life. Doctors may have to amputate his leg or more to save him. My cousin's wife also had a bout with this flesh eating bacteria several years back and they had to remove a lot of skin and flesh to save her. More and more cases are starting to show up and it is frightening.

What is even more frightening is that the pharmaceutical companies are not producing new antibiotics to combat these superbugs. It takes several years of testing for an antibiotic to be FDA approved and right now there are very few in the pipeline.
The bottom line is the companies are not making much money from these drugs so there is no incentive to make them.

We are spending billions of dollars fighting the war on terror and yet we have an invisible threat in our own backyard that we virtually have no way to defend ourselves against. This is what we really need to be afraid of.


BetteJo said...

I was listening to someone talking about MRSA yesterday and how the drug companies can make money much more quickly selling simple things like Viagra than spending years developing new antibiotics. Pretty scary, I agree.

palette48 said...

Yes, this really concerns me just because it has struck home twice. I don't want to be a worry wart but can't help it!