Web Zap*Germs Archive

August 25, 2006

Community-acquired MRSA Now Widespread

In the past couple of years, CA-MRSA has fully infiltrated itself into the US community, which I remarked on back in April 2005. As a new MSNBC article states, MRSA skin infections are often mistaken for spider bites, but don't clear up and rapidly get worse.
Bug bites are common in summer but a new super bug sweeping San Diego could have potentially fatal effects. Local hospital emergency rooms are being jammed by patients who've been bitten by a strain of bacteria resistant to antibiotics.

Although the bites look they come from spiders, officials say they're much more harmful. Even worse: They're spreading so fast that the local emergency rooms are reporting at least one new infection per day.
If left untreated, MRSA can disfigure and sometimes be fatal. The current strain in San Diego originated locally and is spreading throughout the community at a very high rate.

Although the strain is resistant to most antibiotics, [Scripps Mercy hospital epidemiologist Frank] Myers says some still do work but warns if you see a strange bite that doesn't seem to be healing to see a doctor right away.

"Ask [the doctor to] do a culture on it and then follow completely the guidelines for antibiotic use.

MRSA used to be spread a lot in locker rooms, especially among football players and wrestling teams. Now, Myers said babies are getting through a diaper rash and other family members are spreading it just by casual touch.
Read my post on practical tips for treating early-stage MRSA infections for more info.


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