Remember two years ago when every news show featured hysterical reports about the so-called H1N1 pandemic and how the supposed killer flu was striking down healthy kids? True, many previously healthy children became critically ill, developing severe pneumonia and respiratory failure. And some tragically died after being diagnosed with H1N1. But was that really the accurate explanation of what caused their death?
According to the largest nationwide investigation to date of the flu in children who became critically ill, scientists from Children’s Hospital Boston have found another reason to explain the severity of the youngsters illness. It turns out that it most likely wasn’t H1N1 alone that caused healthy children to become so ill many died.
Instead, these kids were unknowingly infected with something else. That additional infection, the superbug known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), spiked the risk for flu-related deaths 8-fold in children who were otherwise believed to be totally healthy before they became ill.
Almost all of these children who were found to be infected with the superbug were immediately treated with vancomycin, considered to be best treatment for MRSA. Yet they died despite being administered this powerful antibiotic and their deaths were blamed on the flu. But the new research suggests it was the MRSA that played a huge role in killing these children.