March 14, 2013
By Dr. Mercola
Skin and soft tissue infections are among the most common bacterial infections encountered in clinical practice.
Such infections can be caused by a number of bacteria that gain entrance into your body via cuts, scrapes, bites or open wounds. Even bacteria that normally live on your skin can cause an infection when introduced into your body this way.
Skin and soft tissue infections account for more than 14 million hospital visits each year, costing the health care system an estimated $24 billion.
Unfortunately, many infections are becoming increasingly difficult to treat. Antibiotic overuse has led to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, also known as MRSA.
Finding effective countermeasures to this growing public health threat has turned out few options, but the remedy may be as simple as colored light.
According to a new proof-of-principle study,1 blue light can selectively eliminate infections caused by Pseudomonas aeruginosa. According to lead researcher Michael R. Hamblin of the Massachusetts General Hospital: 2
“Microbes replicate very rapidly, and a mutation that helps a microbe survive in the presence of an antibiotic drug will quickly predominate throughout the microbial population. Recently, a dangerous new enzyme, NDM-1, that makes some bacteria resistant to almost all antibiotics available has been found in the United States. Many physicians are concerned that several infections soon may be untreatable.
Blue light is a potential non-toxic, non-antibiotic approach for treating skin and soft tissue infections, especially those caused by antibiotic resistant pathogens.”