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Study: Rio Olympics Will Expose Athletes To Antibiotics-Resistant Super Bacteria

Photo credit: Silvia Izquierdo/Associated Press

Athletes and spectators at the Rio Olympics will be exposed to deadly, antibiotics-resistant super bacteria according to two research studies reviewed by Reuters.

Researchers found the super bacteria—which normally only turn up in hospitals—at the swimming and canoeing/rowing venues. The microbes had previously been detected at the sailing and wind-surfing sites. Hospitals in Rio de Janeiro regularly dump waste into storm drains and rivers, substantially polluting that city’s water supply.


The study found that 90 percent of samples from Flamengo Beach—the spectator location for sailing events—had the super bacteria.

The super bacteria can cause hard-to-treat urinary, gastrointestinal, pulmonary and bloodstream infections, along with meningitis. The CDC says studies show that these bacteria contribute to death in up to half of patients infected.

Stay safe out there.


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Timothy Burke

Timothy Burke is formerly Deadspin's Video Director.

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