Infections with resistant bacteria
One of the most worrying facts about patients with leukemia is that they are susceptible to infections with bacteria resistant to antibiotics. They are continuously exposed to infections, doctors use various antibiotics over the course of the disease to treat infections, and they would naturally develop resistant organisms that make it worse still, and more difficult to manage.
The most common resistant bacteria are methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (they are resistant to penicillin, quinolones, and cephalosporin antibiotics), vancomycin-resistant staphylococci (they are resistant to a wide variety of antibiotics, especially vancomycin), and other multidrug-resistant bacteria that include Klebsiella and E. coli resistant to penicillin, cephalosporin and quinolones. In some cases, antibiotic resistance is so severe that doctors need to use a group of antibiotics called carbapenems.