Drug resistant infections reported after stem cell treatments in Mexico

Three people have contracted Mycobacterium abscessus after receiving stem cell treatments in Mexico, according to a May 9 report issued by the CDC.

The report describes three patients who acquired the infections during stem cell injections at two clinics in the Mexican border state of Baja California. It is not clear what caused the outbreak, but in the past some physicians in Mexico were taking multiple doses of anesthetics from a single vial due to shortages or other problems, ABC reported May 9. 

The first case was reported in late 2022 in a woman who had embryonic stem-cell treatment for multiple sclerosis. In spring 2023, two male patients had stem-cell treatments for forms of arthritis. The patients' infections were detected at two Colorado hospitals and patients remain in treatment.

M. abscessus is a difficult-to-treat infection, according to the CDC.

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