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Pseudomonas aeruginosa

 
 
Pseudomonas aeruginosa_Copyright Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
Copyright Dennis Kunkel Microscopy, Inc.
 
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is a Gram-negative, rod-shaped bacterium and is an opportunistic pathogen of humans. The bacterium rarely infects healthy tissues unless the tissue defenses are compromised in some manner.
 
Pseudomonas aeruginosa causes urinary tract infections, respiratory system infections, dermatitis, soft tissue infections, bacteraemia and a variety of systemic infections, particularly in victims of severe burns, and also in cancer and AIDS patients who are immuno-compromised.
 
Pseudomonas aeruginosa is notorious for its resistance to antibiotics and is, therefore, a particularly dangerous pathogen. Since its natural habitat is the soil, living in association with bacilli, actinomycetes and molds, it has developed resistance to a variety of their naturally-occurring antibiotics.

Only a few antibiotics are effective against Pseudomonas, including fluoroquinolone, gentamicin and imipenem, but even these antibiotics are not effective against all strains.

The difficulty of treating Pseudomonas infections is most dramatically illustrated in cystic fibrosis patients, virtually all of whom eventually become infected with a strain that is very resistant and difficult to treat.

 

 
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