Staying in the intensive care unit damages the intestinal flora | Health City Berlin 2

Staying in the intensive care unit damages the intestinal flora | Health City Berlin

In most intensive care patients, potential harmful microbes are prevalent in the intestinal flora. This was shown by a survey by British researchers.

In most intensive care patients, potential harmful microbes are prevalent in the intestinal flora. This was shown by researchers at the Quadram Institute in Norwich, UK.

The gut microbiome is a complex community of bacteria and other germs and plays an important role in health and well-being. A number of factors can reduce the gut microbial diversity of intensive care patients and increase the risk of infection. These include assisted ventilation, artificial nutrition and certain medications.

Microbial diversity decreased significantly

The study involved 24 patients aged 25-85 years. Researchers around Professor Mark Pallen examined stool specimens to determine how the diversity and composition of the gut microbiome varied during ICU patients.

Although patients were brought into the ICU for a variety of reasons, including trauma, heart attack, and cancer, two-thirds showed a significant decrease in microbial diversity during their stay.

Staying in the intensive care unit damages the intestinal flora

Staying in the intensive care unit caused damage to the gut flora: Long-term intensive care in the gut microbiome was dominated by bacteria that could become pathogenic. Enterococcus faecium was most commonly found. This is a common hospital germ.

E. faecium can cause serious infections, especially in places where medical devices such as intravenous cannulas have been used. When these bacteria enter the bloodstream, life-threatening infections can occur. Enterococcal infections are especially difficult to treat, as many species in this group have developed resistance to several antibiotics, including the latest antibiotic vancomycin.

In particular, the antibiotics meropenem had a negative effect

In particular, the antibiotic, meropenem, had a negative effect on healthy gut bacteria in intensive care patients. To protect microbial diversity, researchers suggest that patients be given drugs that absorb or inactivate them, such as charcoal, to reduce the impact of antibiotics on the gut microbiota.

Alternatively, it could restore the microbial diversity of intensive care patients by transplanting the microbiota into a stool. The study was published in the journal Microbial Genomics.

Photo: Aok-Federation