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Infection Control and why it matters

Hemotune focuses on controlling sepsis; the intense, and often life-threatening, response of the immune system to defend against pathogens and pathogen-derived proteins in the bloodstream. Although sepsis and septic shock are quite extreme manifestations of infection, every case of sepsis starts with the patient being exposed to pathogenic bacteria, viruses or fungi.

For the moment in most countries, antibiotics can be used to control infection. However this is not without a price: antibiotic resistance is increasing worldwide, giving rise to multi-drug, or even pan-resistant organisms, signalling the need for alternative strategies against pathogens in common infections.

Things that can be done:

Avoid the unnecessary use of antibiotics. Although at times antibiotics are required, if there is an alternative route, consider it. Furthermore, only take antibiotics when prescribed by a doctor at the appropriate dosage.

Keep things clean. This goes for everything, from your hands to your house. Keeping surfaces clean in your house will control the involuntary transmission of pathogens between members of your household. Similarly, washing your hands will prevent the transmission of pathogens from your hands on literally anything you touch (1). This is especially important for surfaces very frequently touched, like door handles.

Keep up with your oral hygiene. Brushing your teeth sounds obvious, but oral and dental infections can trigger sepsis. Make sure you're protected by taking care of your teeth and mouth and supplement your oral hygiene with regular trips to the dental hygienist (2).

Vaccinate. Medicine and technology has progressed enough to offer vaccines to prevent a range of diseases. Unless your doctor advises against it, make sure you vaccinate yourself and your children to prevent avoidable infections and control their transmission (3).


1 Mathur P. Hand hygiene: Back to the basics of infection control. Indian J. Med. Res. 2011.

2 Duval X, Millot S, Chirouze C, Selton-Suty C, Moby V, Tattevin P et al. Oral streptococcal endocarditis, oral hygiene habits, and recent dental procedures: A case-control study. Clin Infect Dis 2017. doi:10.1093/cid/cix237.

3 Klugman KP, Black S. Impact of existing vaccines in reducing antibiotic resistance: Primary and secondary effects. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A. 2018. doi:10.1073/pnas.1721095115.

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