methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

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methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

A bacterium with multiple antibiotic resistances: e.g., aminoglycosides, chloramphenicol, clindamycin, erythromycin, rifampin, tetracycline, streptomycin, cephalosporin. Some strains of MRSA have reduced sensitivity to antiseptics.

Treatment
Vancomycin.

methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

Methicillin-aminoglycoside resistant Staphylococcus aureus, MRSA An organism with multiple antibiotic resistances–eg, aminoglycosides, chloramphenicol, clindamycin, erythromycin, rifampin, tetracycline, streptomycin, cephalosporin; some strains of MRSA have ↓ sensitivity to antiseptics Treatment Vancomycin. See Antibiotic resistance.

methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus

Abbreviation: MRSA
A strain of S. aureus resistant to methicillin. MRSA is resistant to all penicillins. Patients with MRSA infections should be isolated; appropriate mask-gown-glove precautions must be used, depending on the site of the infection. MRSA is an important cause of health care associated infections. Handwashing is essential in caring for patients who harbor this organism. See: isolation; resistance, antibiotic

MRSA is resistant to most antibiotics and is usually acquired in hospitals or nursing homes, spread from patient to patient by contaminated hands, clothing, and equipment. Infection with MRSA can range from pneumonia to flesh-eating diseases. About 0.5% of people in the U.S. have MRSA bacteria on their skin or in their noses and, although not infected, can still spread the bacteria to those at risk. The CDC estimates that 90,000 people die annually in the U.S. from hospital-acquired infections; about 17,000 of these deaths are due to MRSA. Agencies can now reduce and perhaps stop the spread of MRSA infection by following the guidelines of a pilot program of the Pittsburgh, PA, Veterans Affairs Healthcare System.

Patient care

The Pittsburgh guidelines require that all patients have their noses swabbed for MRSA on admission and discharge. Those with MRSA are isolated from other patients and are cared for in protective isolation. Noninvasive equipment is disinfected after each use with these patients, and strict hand hygiene policies are applied. As a result, there was a drop of more than 70% of MRSA cases in surgical care units. The VA, because of the Pittsburgh results, plans to expand the program to more than 150+ VA hospitals nationwide. The CDC suggests screening high-risk patients (those with weak immune systems, intensive care patients, and patients in nursing homes), rather than recommending universal screening. However, Denmark, Finland, and the Netherlands have essentially eradicated MRSA by using universal screening methods. In addition to screening everyone, agencies may provide MRSA carriers with special soap and antibiotic nasal creams. Additionally, a gene-based MRSA test provides results in hours as opposed to days.

See also: Staphylococcus