‘Superbug’ exposure linked to UCLA medical procedures

UCLA says seven people were infected and more than 100 exposed to a potentially deadly, drug-resistant “superbug” on contaminated medical instruments – and the bacteria may have contributed to two deaths.

Other outbreaks caused by CRE bacteria have been reported in hospitals around the country. Some of the bacteria are resistant to most antibiotics and experts say they can contribute to death in up to half of those infected.

UCLA said in a statement Wednesday that patients may have been infected during endoscopic procedures at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center between October and January.

Patients are being sent home-testing kits.

UCLA says the patients were examined with endoscopes that were sterilized according to manufacturers’ directions. The two devices have been taken out of service and decontamination procedures upgraded.


FDA: Cumin shipments may be contaminated by peanuts

The Food and Drug Administration is advising people with peanut allergies to avoid cumin after several shipments of the spice tested positive for peanuts not listed on the label.

The agency issued an alert Wednesday saying that people who are highly allergic or sensitive to peanuts may be at risk of a serious or life-threatening allergic reaction to the contaminated cumin. Hundreds of products have been recalled since December, from spice mixes to black beans to meats marinaded with cumin.

The spice is often used in Tex-Mex and Indian dishes, and the contaminated spice may be imported. The FDA declined to provide any further details on how it happened or what company added peanuts or peanut residue to its cumin spice.

– From news service reports