ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Combating Myths About Seasonal Allergies
New Spray Could Benefit Cystic Fibrosis Patients
Folic Acid Might Offer Allergy Relief
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
Soybean Chemicals May Reduce Effects of Menopause
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
ANIMAL CARE
Animals Respond to Acupuncture's Healing Touch
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Safe Toys for Dogs
BONES & JOINTS
Returning to the Road Tricky After Injury
New Clues to How Fish Oils Help Arthritis Patients
'Snowbirds' Beware the Climate Changes
CANCER
Low Vitamin D Levels May Initiate Cancer Development
Green Tea May Help Prevent Oral Cancer
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
CAREGIVING
For Dialysis Patients, More Pills = Lower Quality of Life
MRSA Infections Spreading to Kids in Community
Older Caregivers Prone to Worse Sleep Patterns
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Secondhand Smoke Quickly Affects Blood Vessels
Night Shift Work Hard on the Heart
COSMETIC
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
What to Do If You Have Unsightly Veins
Mouse Study Finds Molecule That Tells Hair to Grow
DENTAL, ORAL
Amino Acid May Be Key to Strong Teeth
Dental Implants Need More Work Than Root Canals
Biological Product Shows Promise Against Gum Disease
DIABETES
Patients' Photos Help Boost Radiologists' Accuracy
Fish Twice a Week Cuts Diabetics' Kidney Risks
Coffee, Tea Might Stave Off Diabetes
DIET, NUTRITION
TV Food Ads Promote Bad Diets
Fatty Acid in Olive Oil Wards Off Hunger
HELP TO LOSE WEIGHT ON A LOW CAL BUDGET
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Scorpion Anti-Venom Speeds Children's Recovery
EPA Alerts Seniors to Carbon Monoxide Dangers
Gas Cooking Might Up Your Cancer Risk
EYE CARE, VISION
Blood Sugar Control Helps Diabetics Preserve Sight
Impotence Drugs Don't Harm Vision: Study
Guard Kids' Eyes Against Long-Term Sun Damage
FITNESS
Run for Your Life
Simple Exercise Precautions To Help Keep Baby Boomers Fit
Maximize Your Run
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Olive Oil May Protect Against Bowel Disease
New Guidelines Issued for Management of IBS
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
GENERAL HEALTH
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
For Women, Moderate Midlife Drinking Linked to Healthier Old Age
The Brain Comes Alive With the Sounds of Music
HEAD & NECK
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
E-Mailing Your Way to Healthier Habits
Magnet Therapy May Ease Hard-to-Treat Depression
HEARING
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Cherry-Enriched Diet Cut Heart Risks in Rats
Drinking Your Way to Health? Perhaps Not
Fondness for Fish Keeps Japanese Hearts Healthy
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
The HPV Vaccine: Preventative Medicine or Human Sacrifice?
Older Adults May Have Some Immunity to Swine Flu
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Family Medicine Cabinet Top Source Of Kid's Poisonings
Standard IQ Test May Underestimate People With Autism
Soothing Imagery May Help Rid Some Kids of Stomach Pain
MEN'S HEALTH
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
Sunlight May Help Protect Men From Kidney Cancer
Could Chinese Herb Be a Natural Viagra?
MENTAL HEALTH
Music Soothes Anxiety as Well as Massage Does
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
For Baby and Mom Alike, Breast-Feeding May Be Best
Alternative Treatments May Boost IVF Success
Breast-Feeding Benefits Moms and Babies
SENIORS
For Older Walkers, Faster Is Better
Eating Well And Keeping Active As You Grow Old Will Help You Stay Sharp
Seniors Who Volunteer May Live Longer
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Exercising Throat Muscles May Relieve Sleep Apnea
Pay Attention to Signs That Say You're Too Fatigued to Drive
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Vitamin D Good for Breast Cancer Patients
Exercise, Weight Control May Keep Fibromyalgia at Bay
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
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Disinfectants Can Boost Bacteria's Resistance to Treatment

THURSDAY, Oct. 16 (HealthDay News) -- Improper use of chemical disinfectants might actually make the bacteria they are trying to kill stronger and more resistant over time, a new report says.

When these chemicals, called biocides, are used at lower-than-lethal concentrations, the bacteria can survive and eventually become resistant to the chemical and antibiotics, according to a paper published in the October issue of Microbiology.

In experiments done on the potentially lethal bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, researchers found the samples mutated when exposed to low concentrations of several biocides and dyes regular used in hospitals for disinfecting. The mutated bacterium had increased numbers of efflux pumps, which remove toxins from its cells. The pumps eliminate antibiotics from the cell and can make the bacteria resistant to those drugs.

"Pathogenic bacteria with more pumps are a threat to patients, as they could be more resistant to treatment," author Dr. Glenn Kaatz, head of infectious diseases for the Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Detroit, said in a society news release.

If the surviving bacteria are exposed repeatedly to biocides, they may build up resistance to disinfectants and antibiotics. Such bacteria contribute to hospital-acquired infections.

"Careful use of antibiotics and the use of biocides that are not known to be recognized by efflux pumps may reduce the frequency at which resistant strains are found," Kaatz said. "Alternatively, the combination of a pump inhibitor with an antimicrobial agent or biocide will reduce the emergence of such strains and their clinical impact."

More information

The Alliance for the Prudent Use of Antibiotics has more about antibacterial agents.



-- Kevin McKeever



SOURCE: Society for General Microbiology, news release, Oct. 5, 2008

Last Updated: Oct. 17, 2008

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