MRSA

Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus

What is it?

MRSA is a staph infection that is resistant to several antibiotics. The pathogen associated with MRSA is staphyloccocus aureus. There are two types of MRSA; hospital associated MRSA and community associated MRSA. Hospital associated MRSA happens to people who are in a health care setting, while community associated MRSA happens to people who have close skin to skin contact with others, like athletes. MRSA is a different staph bacteria because it has built up a resistance to most of the antibiotics doctors use.

How can the disease spread and how can the spread be prevented?

MRSA can spread from one person to another by skin-to-skin contact with another individual, such as athletes invovled in football and wrestling. MRSA often developes around open sores, like cuts or scrapes, so the disease is aquired when the staph bacteria enters the body through a cut or wound. To prevent the spread of MRSA you can make sure to practice good hygiene, keep your cuts and scrapes clean and cover them with a bandage, avoid contact with other people's personal items like towels, washcloths, and razors, and make sure you wash soiled sheets, towels, and clothes in hot water with bleach.

What does it look like?

signs and syptoms

The affected area will be red and swollen. Painful bumps that weep and are full of pus may also appear. The area will be warm to the touch, and some people develope a fever.

How is it treated?

MRSA is treated either with antibiotics and/or by draining the infection

Other important information

You are at greater risk for becoming infected if you spend a lot of time together in a group, such as in school, college dorms, or in millitary barracks. This is because when a lot of people come together they are more likely to touch the same surfaces and have skin-to-skin contact or share unclean equipment, therefore the infection can spread quicker. MRSA is contagious during a skin infection. MRSA can affect your bloodstream, lungs, heart, bones, and joints.
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