Showerhead linked to lung infections – Study

Stepping into the shower is naturally expected to wash away dirt and germs, but scientists recently found that showerhead might instead dump nasty bacteria that may cause lung infections on users. These are the findings of a new study published recently in the journal ‘mBio’. Although most people know how to keep their bathroomsclean, especiallythetoiletandsink, someplacesinthe United States (US) including Southern California, Florida and New York as well as Europe where germs called mycobacteria are found in abundance in showerheads are the same places where bacterial lung infections are most common, the study found. Mycobacterium is a genus of Actinobacteria, given its own family, the Mycobacteriaceae. Over 190 species are recognised in this genus. This genus includes pathogens known to causeseriousdiseasesinmammals, including tuberculosis (Mycobacterium tuberculosis) and leprosy (Mycobacteriumleprae) inhumans.

A Professor of Medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City, Dr. Marc Siegel noted that bacteria grow in wet places like showerheads, the ‘Healthday’ reported. He reminded people to clean their showerhead, which nobody does,” adding that most people were likely to tolerate mycobacteria and not get sick from it. According to Siegel, bacteria in showerheads won’t cause an outbreak of lung infections, but people who are run down or who have a compromised immune system or a chronic condition may be vulnerable. Siegel recommended cleaning showerhead every week or two with a disinfectant that contains ammonia to be sure that all the germs nesting there were killed.

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