A day long-feared by doctors has arrived: A patient in the United States infected by a strain of bacteria that appears completely resistant to antibiotics.

Before exploring the significance of this development, it is important to note that the patient in question is alive and has even been released from the hospital, although the study reported by the Washington Post is vague on most details of her condition. She is described as a 49-year-old Pennsylvania woman, whose urine contained a strain of E. coli bacteria that resisted colistin, the “antibiotic of last resort.”

She was treated at an outpatient military facility in Pennsylvania, with the Defense Department and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center involved in her case.

CNN adds that the patient had not traveled outside the United States during the past five months, and doctors do not yet understand how the bacteria got into her system.

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