The forum itself was a highly interactive, self-discovery experience.
There are viruses in Dodge Pond, too, most of which infect its bacteria. I recently met that man. We headed into his office, Khodadoust walking slowly and guardedly. All things considered, Khodadoust seemed in good health — certainly good enough to chat for two hours about OMKO1, about his illness, about his long career transplanting corneas and training new doctors.
During our conversation, he would sometimes carefully rise from his chair to lead me down hallways so that he could show me fading framed photographs chronicling his work at Johns Hopkins and Yale, as well as in Shiraz, the Iranian city where he was born and to which he returned to build an eye hospital.
Inall that came to a halt. The whole procedure went off without a hitch, after which Khodadoust went home to recover. But things quickly went south. Within 48 hours, he had developed a raging fever and had to be rushed back to the hospital.
When surgeons opened his chest, they discovered that an infection had destroyed his sternum, and his chest cavity was filled with blood and pus. There was a moss-green patch on his aorta.
It had to be an infection with a common species of bacteria called Pseudomonas aeruginosa. When they were finally done, they protected his heart with a fatty membrane from his abdomen and then closed the gap where his sternum had been with muscle and skin.
They doubted he would survive long. When Khodadoust thinks back to that time, he remembers being in absolute darkness. He felt he was being given a choice. To be or not to be?
I pictured my children, I pictured my wife. Tears in their eyes. But now Narayan and the other doctors had to fight the infection that had nearly killed their patient. Pseudomonas aeruginosa is harmless to healthy people, but it can be deadly for anyone with a weakened immune system.
People with cystic fibrosis can get Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in their lungs, which can lead to fatal pneumonia. Khodadoust may have gotten infected by a tiny patch of bacteria that grew on the mesh used to fix his aorta.
Narayan and his colleagues prescribed a heavy course of antibiotics to get rid of the infection. It reacted to the infection by creating a tunnel-like cavity called a fistula that formed a hole on the surface of his chest.
His Pseudomonas colonized the fistula, too. After three months on antibiotics in the hospital, Khodadoust was allowed to go home. He still had a major infection, which required him to keep an IV port in his chest. Three times a day he had to take a massive dose of antibiotics to keep the bacteria at bay.
Yet the microbes would still manage to overwhelm the drugs from time to time, causing sepsis and sending him back to the hospital for even more aggressive treatments.
Narayan and his colleagues ruled out any more surgery.
If they tried to take out the infected plastic mesh or close the fistula, they might spread the infection around even more and kill him. His visitor was a young scientist named Benjamin Chan.
Chan wondered if Narayan wanted to test out an experimental weapon against infections. Perhaps viruses could kill bacteria that antibiotics could not.
Chan was hardly the first scientist to have this idea. Bacteria-infecting viruses, known as bacteriophages, were discovered a century ago. They make a living by slipping inside their microbial hosts and hijacking their biochemistry to make many new copies of themselves.
Many species of bacteriophages then burst out of their host, killing it in the process. By the s, it was common in Europe and North America. You could buy phage-laced powder for skin infections over the counter.
Once antibiotics came to light, however, phage therapy virtually disappeared from most countries. Doctors gained more confidence in antibiotics, because they were simple chemicals that could be rigorously tested. Bacteriophages, by contrast, were mysterious, quasi-living things that scientists still barely understood.A good quote can change a man’s perspective on life.
It could shape his behavior for the better or simply make him sound really cultured at a cocktail party. Whether it’s ancient Greek, some. Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.
Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. After being alerted of a dangerously high heart rate while at rest, one man is crediting a new Apple Watch feature for saving his life.
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