5 Bacteria Types Killed Nearly 6.8 Lakh Indians In 2019: Lancet Study

Five types of bacteria claimed nearly 6.8 lakh lives in India in 2019. Among these bacterial types, E. coli was found to be the most deadly pathogen.

Varun Verma
Written by: Varun VermaUpdated at: Nov 23, 2022 17:14 IST
5 Bacteria Types Killed Nearly 6.8 Lakh Indians In 2019: Lancet Study

According to a Lancet study, five types of bacteria claimed nearly 6.8 lakh lives in India in 2019. These five types of bacteria are: E. coli, S. pneumoniae, K. pneumoniae, S. aureus, and A. baumannii. Among these bacterial types, E. coli was found to be the most deadly and killed nearly 1.57 lakh Indians. The research stated that bacterial infections were the second leading cause of death globally in 2019.

Findings in India

The researchers stated that 77 lakh deaths in 2019 were associated with 33 common bacterial infections. These five types of bacteria are responsible for more than half of all deaths. The deadliest bacterial pathogen and the types of infection varied by location and age, researchers added.

In India, the bacterial types – E. coli, S. pneumoniae, K. pneumoniae, S. aureus and A. baumannii – were the deadliest, claiming 6,78,846 lives in 2019. Among these bacterial types, E. coli was found to be the most deadly and killed nearly 1.57 lakh Indians in the same year, the research stated.

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Global Findings

The researchers stated that bacterial infections were the second leading cause of death globally in 2019, after ischemic heart disease.

More deaths were linked to two of the deadliest bacteria, more than HIV/AIDS (8,64,000 deaths). These two bacterial types are S. aureus and E. coli, the researchers said.

The researchers further stated that as compared to estimates available for pathogens such as tuberculosis, malaria, and HIV, estimates for the burden of disease due to bacterial pathogens are limited to specific types of infection, or focused on particular populations.

The current study provides the first global estimate of the mortality linked to 33 common bacterial pathogens and 11 major infection types, called infectious syndromes, causing deaths due to sepsis.

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Conclusion

On the issue of reducing the disease burden, the researchers said that it is crucial to build stronger health systems with greater diagnostic laboratory capacity and implement control measures, along with optimising antibiotic usage.

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