If you have a major injury or illness, you may have little choice but to visit the hospital. After all, your primary care physician may lack the expertise and equipment necessary to treat you in a non-hospital setting. Unfortunately, though, a hospital visit may also leave you with a serious infection.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that one out of every 25 patients develops a hospital-related infection annually. Unfortunately, these infections may lead to a variety of serious complications, ranging from weight loss to death.
Why are hospital infections so common?
Obviously, individuals go to hospitals when they are not feeling well. If a person has an infectious disease, he or she may easily pass it on to other patients in the hospital.
The hospital may become a germ breeding ground if professionals at the hospital do not follow appropriate sterilization and sanitization procedures. That is, hospital staff may spread germs through use of unsanitary medical equipment, tools, bedding, food service items or even hands and clothing.
The hospital’s HVAC and water systems may also spread infectious agents throughout the facility.
Why are hospital infections so serious?
In a hospital setting, you may be vulnerable many different infections. Some common ones include the following:
- Urinary tract infections
- Bloodstream infections
- Surgical site infections
If doctors do not treat these infections properly, they may lead to a variety of consequences, such as sepsis or sepsis shock. Unfortunately, though, some infections resist antibiotics and other therapies. If you acquire MRSA or another superbug, doctors may have limited options both for treating the illness and saving your life.