"Superbug" Germ Kills 3 In Chicago

Published: Sep 22, 2005

Three Chicago-area children have died of a toxic shock syndrome-like illness caused by a superbug they caught in the community and not in the hospital, where the germ is usually found. The cases show that this already worrisome staph germ has become even more dangerous by acquiring the ability to cause this shock-like condition. "There's a new kid on the block," said Dr. John Bartlett of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, referring to the added strength of the superbug known as methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA. "The fact that there are three community-acquired staph aureus cases is really scary," continued Bartlett, an infectious disease specialist. The Chicago deaths were described in Thursday's New England Journal of Medicine.

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