December 27, 2012
As drug-resistant superbugs and increasingly virulent viruses menace the medical world, patients face a threat that was supposed to die with the advent of the disposable syringe 150 years ago: dirty needles.
When seven people arrived at a Delaware hospital in March with drug-resistant MRSA infections, the similarities were alarming.
All of the patients had the same strain of MRSA, all had the infections in joints, and all had gotten injections in those joints at the same orthopedic clinic in a three-day span. State health officials found that the clinic had injected multiple patients with medication from a vial that was meant to be used only once, spreading the MRSA bacteria to a new patient with each shot.