Superbugs: the race to stop an epidemic
Drug-resistant bacteria - known as superbugs - are one of the biggest medical threats of our time. Here, a doctor, researcher, and ethics professor tells the exhilarating story of his race to beat them and save countless lives. When doctor Matt McCarthy first meets Jackson, an Af... read full description below.
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|Library of Congress
||Drug resistance in microorganisms, Bacterial diseases - Prevention, Drugs - Testing, Antibiotics - History
Description of this Book
Drug-resistant bacteria - known as superbugs - are one of the biggest medical threats of our time. Here, a doctor, researcher, and ethics professor tells the exhilarating story of his race to beat them and save countless lives. When doctor Matt McCarthy first meets Jackson, an African-American mechanic from Queens, it is in the ER, where he has come for treatment for an infected gunshot wound. Usually, antibiotics would be prescribed, but Jackson's infection is one of a growing number of superbugs, bacteria that have built up resistance to known drugs. He only has one option, and if that doesn't work he may lose his leg or even his life. On the same day, McCarthy and his mentor Tom Walsh begin work on a groundbreaking clinical trial for new antibiotic they believe will eradicate certain kinds of superbugs and demonstrate to Big Pharma that investment in these drugs can save millions of lives and prove financially viable. But there are seemingly endless hoops to jump through before they can begin administering the drug to patients, and for people like Jackson time is in short supply. Superbugs is a compelling tale of medical ingenuity. From the muddy trenches of the First World War, where Alexander Fleming searched for a cure for soldiers with infected wounds, to breakthroughs in antibiotics and antifungals today that could revolutionise how infections are treated, McCarthy takes the reader on a roller-coaster ride through the history - and future - of medicine. Along the way, we meet patients like Remy, a teenage girl with a dangerous and rare infection; Donny, a retired firefighter with a compromised immune system; and Bill, the author's own father-in-law, who contracts a deadly staph infection. And we learn about the ethics of medical research: why potentially life-saving treatments are often delayed for years to protect patients from exploitation. Can McCarthy get his trial approved and underway in time to save the lives of his countless patients infected with deadly bacteria, who have otherwise lost all hope?
Awards, Reviews & Star Ratings
||`There might not be another author who so fluidly combines a world-class doctor and researcher's knowledge and experience with a memoirist's sensibility. Matt McCarthy is Siddhartha Mukherjee and David Sedaris rolled into one. Who else but McCarthy could write a dispatch from the front lines of the secret fight for the future of the human race that is not just gripping and illuminating, but also poignant and funny?' -- Ben Reiter, <em>New York Times</em> bestselling author of <em>Astroball</em> `A perfect work of popular science. Like Atul Gawande, Matt McCarthy has the magical ability to transmit deeply technical knowledge in a way that makes the reader feel like part of a high-level professional conversation; like Michael Lewis, a gift for the place where big ideas overlap; like Elizabeth Kolbert, a sense of narrative urgency about the state of the present world that makes anything outside its pages seem trivial. Magnificent.' -- Charles Finch, winner of National Book Critics Circle Award
||Bertrams Star Rating: 2 stars (out of 5)
Matt McCarthy is the author of two US bestsellers, The Real Doctor Will See You Shortly and Odd Man Out. He is an assistant professor of medicine at Weill Cornell and a staff physician at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, where he serves on the Ethics Committee. His work has appeared in Sports Illustrated, Slate, The New England Journal of Medicine, and Deadspin. He reviews nonfiction for USA Today and is editor-in-chief of Current Fungal Infection Reports.