MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus) Infection
MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a type of bacterial infection that usually affects the skin. Signs or symptoms of this "staph" infection can include a single red bump that resembles a pimple, pustule, or boil. Transmission occurs between individuals through direct skin-to-skin contact or contact with shared items or surfaces that have come into contact with someone else's infection. Specific types of antibiotics are typically used to treat this type of infection.
What Is MRSA?Staphylococcus aureus, often referred to simply as "staph," are bacteria commonly carried on the skin or in the nose of healthy people.
Sometimes, staph can cause an infection. In fact, staph bacteria are one of the most common causes of skin infections in the United States. Staph bacteria can also cause serious infections.
Some staph bacteria are resistant to antibiotics. One strain of staph resistant to certain antibiotics is MRSA. The acronym MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Methicillin is a type of antibiotic and was one of the first antibiotics that this particular strain of staph became resistant to. However, MRSA is now resistant to other types of antibiotics.
Types of MRSAThere are two types of MRSA, healthcare-associated MRSA and community-associated MRSA.
Until recently, MRSA was more likely to be a hospital-acquired infection. MRSA infections that are first acquired in the hospitals and healthcare facilities (such as nursing homes and dialysis centers) are known as healthcare-associated MRSA.
New strains of MRSA with unique microbiologic and genetic properties have recently emerged in the community and are capable of causing severe infections in otherwise healthy individuals. These MRSA infections are known as community-associated MRSA.
Over the past several decades, community-associated MRSA has become more common. This has escalated MRSA from a controllable condition (limited mostly to hospitals and healthcare facilities) to a serious public health concern.