Re: The Gronkowski infection is very serious
posted at 4/7/2013 4:46 PM EDT
As far as the quality of surgeon is concerned the Doc gets off the hook. Patients being treated in an outpatient setting who fail to respond to conventional antibiotics are generally referred to hospitals as are trauma victims (fractures). (By way of oversimplification)
Infections that fail to respond to conventional antibiotics are termed Resistant. The hospital then becomes the rich respository for most Resistant bacteria. While it may seem like irony, the hospital can serve as the most dangerous place for patients. The enviroment is flooded with resistant bacteria of all types...from chairs, to tabletops, to beds etc. through a series of cross- contaminations bacteria reside everywhere.
Gronks prior visits to the hospital for his earlier fracture and during his post surgical recovery most likely exposed him to many of these Resistant bacteria.
Nosocomial infections are hospital acquired infections due to previous contamination at previous hospital visits. Many of these resistant bacteria defy responsive treatment.
In England a new type of resistant bacteria (very recent) has claimed 6 lives because no known antibiotic has proven effective in either slowing or containing the infection.
In Gronks case it may be that the presurgical cleansing of the surgical site was ineffective (despite due dilligence) because resistant bacteria were not killed by the Beta.. disinfectant cleansing.
As already addressed, the surgical plate could either be a source of contamination or could mask the progression of the infection since x-rays cannot penetrate metal to visualize the progress of healing. As a last resort, 2nd, third, and 4th generation antibiotics may be tried (these are very expensive (pehaps costing $1500-$2500/injection) since only a few bacteria are known to be resistant to them and their use is resticted to the most severe cases.
Much more dire treatments are available...