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Tuesday, 5 July 2016

The development of new antibiotics cannot be left to the market and Big Pharma alone, Pt II: Jan's happy return!

Update 5 July 2016:

Yesterday evening I revisited my friend Jan again, for the second time after I wrote my article about antibiotics on Monday last week (i.e. June 27th, 2016).

During the first week of his illness Jan had litterally clung on to life by the skin of his teeth, as he was very, very ill indeed. When I saw him that Monday, I was both sad and shocked and actually quite pessimistic about his situation: he seemed to be in a deep coma still, even though his situation was allegedly better than before.

However, within two days after that Monday, his situation improved strongly and he slowly, but surely woke up. When I visited him last Friday, it seemed that his strong mind and will-power had already returned to him, even though he yet could not speak due to the oxygen tubes in his throat.

And yesterday-evening when I visited him again, he was able to speak to me as the tubes were removed.  He was begging for water and icecubes and was silently cursing the nurses and doctors, who would not give him more water in order to quench his thirst. In other words: the old Jan had almost returned. 

Jan was still very exhausted, his muscles were yet unwilling due to two weeks without real movement and his body was quite swollen, due to the excess liquids that he had collected in it. Nevertheless, he was as much alive as before his illness. 

Antibiotics, the miracle drug had striken again and had rescued him from a certain death, due to lethal blood poisoning by a very aggressive bacteria.

And I’m grateful: grateful that this miracle drug still worked for my friend. And also for the many, many people with life-threatening infections and wounds.

Nevertheless, the group of people that can’t be helped anymore will grow unstoppably, if pharmaceutical companies and especially national governments and supranational government bodies will not run the gauntlet and quickly develop radically new antibiotics within the next five to ten years. Then, the strongest medical weapon, that the human race had in history, will have lost most of its fire power.

So, urge your own government as well as your universities and scientific institutes to a. develop these indispensable and truly life-saving drugs and b. to be serious about usage and abuse of the current generation of antibiotics.

Think about Jan and about other future victims of seemingly innocent infections, who could easily die when this miracle drug has lost its healing power.

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