What is MRSA Infection?
So what exactly is MRSA Infection? Well, have you experienced or known somebody who suffered from a certain infection that appears to be a reddish rash with lesion similar to a pimple or small boil? It might not be an ordinary pimple at all, especially if it resists antibiotic treatment. It could be an MRSA or Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
The Staphylococcus aureus or S. Aureus is the culprit of most staph infections among the more than 30 species in the staph family of bacteria that cause varied types of illnesses. Staphylococcus aureus, commonly known for its shorter name staph, is a strain of bacteria that live on the surface of human skin and inside noses, and which does not respond to certain antibiotics called beta-lactams, including penicillins and cephalosporins. Most often, MRSA infection are classified as community acquired (CA-MRSA) or hospital- or health-care acquired (HA-MRSA).
Unless it manages to get into the body, through cuts or abrasions, S. aureus is normally harmless. In fact, one out of every four healthy people has staph germ on his skin or nasal passage, although he may be completely unaware of its presence. The S. aureus bacteria may also enter a person’s body through catheter or breathing tube.
Once the bacteria have gain entry, however, S. aureus may cause either a minor and local infection, in the like of a pimple; or it could cause a serious contagion. Serious staph infections or MRSA infection usually happen among people who have weak immune system, especially cancer patients or those who are receiving kidney dialysis, transplant recipients, patients wearing invasive devices, and those having recent surgery. Severe asthmatics, intravenous drug users, diabetics, children and even those living in nursing care facilities may also be at risk of acquiring staph infections.
When the bacteria get into the bloodstream and travel through the internal organs, it may cause chest infection or pneumonia, bone infection, heart valve infection or endocarditis, blood toxicity or septicaemia. MRSA infection likewise causes impetigo, one of the most common skin infections among children that produce blisters or sores on the face, neck, hands, and diaper area. Impetigo can be transmitted from one person to another by contaminated clothing, bedding and direct contact with someone who has already the MRSA infection. Moreover, S. aureus may also be the culprit of a rare yet fatal condition called toxic shock syndrome, which may develop in persons who have wound infection or who has recently undergone surgery, or in women who use super-absorbent tampons during their menstrual periods. Besides, S. aureus may cause other skin infections like cellulitis, which affects the deeper layers of the skin, such as the dermis and subcutaneous tissue; folliculitis, an infection of the hair follicle; furuncle or boils; hordeolum or stye, an infection in the eyelid; abscess; or draining pus.
A doctor can readily treat a local skin staph infection by simply draining it; but a patient must not pop it open nor drain his infection by himself. The best way to prevent S. aureus infections, and all other infections, are to observe basic cleanliness and good hygiene practices at all times, like frequent washing of hands and regular bathing or showering. When injured, like having cuts, scrapes, eczema or rashes caused by allergic reactions, it is very important to keep those areas of the skin clean and covered.
Should any member of the family or household has already developed an MRSA infection, he may prevent it from spreading to other parts of his body by not touching the infected skin and keeping the infected area covered whenever possible. Other members of the family should not share towel, sheets, clothing or other personal items with the infected member until the MRSA infection is fully treated.