Tony Karumba/Stringer/Getty Images

Pour agir contre la résistance aux antimicrobiens, c'est maintenant ou jamais

LONDRES – Nous tenons souvent pour acquis que toute sorte d'infection peut être guérie et que la médecine moderne toute-puissante va fonctionner exactement comme prévu.

Mais imaginez un autre type de scénario : on vous annonce que vous êtes atteint d'une maladie infectieuse potentiellement mortelle qui était autrefois traitable en quelques semaines ou quelques mois, mais on vous dit que votre traitement prendra au moins deux ans et se composera de mois d'injections quotidiennes et d'environ 14 000 comprimés aux graves effets secondaires. Vous faites partie d'une minorité qui a la « chance » d'avoir été diagnostiquée et traitée, mais vos chances de vaincre la maladie ne sont encore que de 50 contre 50.

Nous ne pensons pas spontanément à associer ce scénario à « la médecine moderne », mais c'est pourtant une réalité tragique pour des milliers de personnes (500 000 et ce chiffre est en hausse), atteintes de tuberculose multirésistante. La tuberculose multirésistante (ou TB-MR), c'est ce qui arrive lorsque les médicaments perdent leur efficacité contre de nouvelles souches d'infection que l'on était capable de traiter auparavant. La tuberculose est désormais l'une des maladies infectieuses les plus meurtrières au monde, qui tue plus d'un million de personnes chaque année. En outre, la tuberculose continue de se propager dans les pays à revenus faibles et moyens, où le personnel de santé s'efforce de la combattre.

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