MRSA or methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus is an infection by the staphylococcus bacteria that is highly resistant to various antibiotics.
An infection is considered highly contagious and spreads via direct contact with an infected individual. Even though a MRSA infection can be serious, it can be managed effectively with antibiotics.
What are the types?
A MRSA infection can be categorized as hospital-acquired or community-acquired.
- Hospital-acquired – this is linked with infections acquired in healthcare facilities such as nursing homes or hospitals. This can occur with direct exposure to an infected wound or contaminated hands.
- Community-acquired – this is associated with infections that spread via close contact with an infected individual or direct contact with an infected wound.
What are the indications?
This form of MRSA infection is likely to cause serious complications such as sepsis, pneumonia or urinary tract infections. A doctor must be seen if any of these signs are present:
- Muscle pain
- Fever and chills
- Chest pain
- Shortness of breath
With this type of MRSA infection, it causes skin infections especially the back of the neck or armpits. Areas that were scratched, cut or rubbed are prone to infection.
An infection typically causes a painful, swollen lump on the skin which often has a white or yellow center. The surrounding area is reddened and warm to the touch.
Management of a MRSA infection
Since a hospital-acquired infection can be dangerous, intravenous antibiotics are required depending on the seriousness of the infection.
For a community-acquired infection, the treatment involves oral antibiotics. In case the skin infection is large enough, the doctor might decide to perform an incision and drainage.