vancomycin-resistant enterococcus

noun

Definition of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus

: any of several enterococci (such as Enterococcus faecalis and E. faecium) that are resistant to vancomycin and other commonly used antibiotics (such as cephalosporin and tetracycline) and are typically benign colonizers of the gastrointestinal tract and female genital tract but may cause severe infections (as of the urinary tract or bloodstream) especially in hospitalized patients with weakened immune systems and in individuals who are on long-term regimens of antibiotics

Note: Vancomycin-resistant enterococci are usually spread by direct contact with contaminated hands, surfaces, or medical equipment.

abbreviation VRE

Examples of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But some enterococcus strains have evolved into a virulent form, called vancomycin-resistant enterococcus, or VRE, that affects more than 540,000 Americans every year. Wired, "Scientists Find a Weak Spot in Some Superbugs' Defenses," 9 Dec. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'vancomycin-resistant enterococcus.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus

1988, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus was in 1988

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Cite this Entry

“Vancomycin-resistant enterococcus.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/vancomycin-resistant%20enterococcus. Accessed 27 Jan. 2021.

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vancomycin-resistant enterococcus

noun

Medical Definition of vancomycin-resistant enterococcus

: any of several bacteria of the genus Enterococcus (as E. faecalis and E. faecium) that are resistant to vancomycin and other commonly used antibiotics (as cephalosporin, trimethoprim, and tetracycline) and that are typically benign colonizers of the gastrointestinal tract and female genital tract but may cause severe infections (as of the urinary tract, bloodstream, or surgical wounds) especially in hospitalized patients with weakened immune systems and in individuals who are on long-term regimens of antibiotics

Note: Vancomycin-resistant enterococci are usually spread by direct contact with contaminated hands (as of a caregiver or heath-care worker), or contaminated surfaces or medical equipment.

abbreviation VRE

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