Professor Dame Sally Davies, the chief medical officer in the United Kingdom, has warned that with the threat of superbugs, cancer and many other diseases may eventually become untreatable.
This new wave of antibiotic resistance could even make routine procedures, like a tonsilectomy or appendectomy extremely risky due to the fact that if the patient becomes infected with a bug resistant to antibiotics, there is little that can be done.
She warns that this could set modern medicine back over 100 years and feels the threat is on par with terrorism.
Dame Sally Davis says that in the future, cancer may become untreatable due to the risk of infection that may be associated with operations and administering chemotherapy.
Doctors at Harvard University say that people who are not in the hospital shouldn’t worry too much about the threat, as most people will not be found totally resistant to superbugs if they are relatively healthy.
However, they do stress that within a hospital setting is where it becomes a problem.
“The appearance of super bugs doesn’t mean that healthy people will suddenly become infected with different types of untreatable infections. The threat of antibiotic resistance is much larger in hospital settings, especially in people who are recovering from surgery or have weakened immune systems. Falling short of creating brand-new medicines to treat bacterial infections, doctors urge patients to take antibiotics only when absolutely necessary.”
In order to protect yourself should you find that you need chemotherapy or an operation that could make you prone to infection, doctors advise that you do not take antibiotics you do not need.
This is especially the case for colds, as many people demand them for a viral infection or doctors may prescribe them in order to help relieve symptoms more quickly without ensuring the patient does not have a virus.
However, a cold, doctors warn, will not get better with antibiotics and you will only create issues for yourself in the future.
Researchers estimate that if proper action is not taken to quell drug resistant bugs, they could end up killing 10 million people around the world annually.
This would lead to a global healthcare crisis.