HealthDay News — Antibiotic-resistant Enterobacteriaceae bacterial infections have increased 700% in American children since 2007, according to a study published online February 22 in the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society.

To assess current trends, the study team analyzed data on about 94,000 children under 18 who were treated at one of 48 hospitals nationwide for an Enterobacteriaceae-associated infection between 2007 and 2015. 

By 2015, the researchers found that 1.5% of these infections were antibiotic-resistant, up from 0.2% in 2007. This represented a more than 700% increase over eight years, the study authors said. Children with the drug-resistant infections had hospital stays that were 20% longer than patients with infections that responded to antibiotics. Most of the resistant infections had developed before the patients went to the hospital for treatment, highlighting increasing community vulnerability. 

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“While the march of antibiotic resistance seems inexorable, informed and rigorous efforts to reverse this trend have been successful for other types of organisms, and are urgently needed within this context,” study author Sharon Meropol, MD, PhD, of the Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital and Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, said in a journal news release.

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