An Essential Heart-Surgery Device Poses a Rare but Deadly Ri
Tests revealed that Henry was infected with non-tuberculosis mycobacteria (NTM), a microbe that’s harmless in healthy people but can be deadly in those with weakened immune systems. NTM is common in soil and water; but it’s so rarely found in hospitals that one nurse told Lori she had never seen it in a chest wound before.

The news got worse from there: Doctors said Henry was too sick to withstand the treatment for NTM (several powerful drugs taken multiple times each day for six months or longer), and that not much else could be done for him. “We had to put him on hospice,” she told Consumer Reports....