Antibiotic resistance and 'superbugs'
The overuse of antibiotics in recent years means they're becoming less effective and has led to the emergence of "superbugs". These are strains of bacteria that have developed resistance to many different types of antibiotics, including:
- MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus)
- Clostridium difficile (C. diff)
- the bacteria that cause multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis
These types of infections can be serious and challenging to treat, and are becoming an increasing cause of disability and death across the world.
The biggest worry is that new strains of bacteria may emerge that cannot be treated by any existing antibiotics.