MRSA stands for methicillin resistant staphylococcus aureus and refers to a drug-resistant bacterium that causes infections in different areas of the body. In the past one decade, the number of people with MRSA has increased in the USA, which has raised a lot of concern. However, apart from its complicated name, many people know very little about MRSA or the superbug as it is commonly referred by many Americans. Here are some interesting secrets about MRSA that you didn’t know:
1. MRSA is common: Do you know that 2% of the world’s population are carriers of the MRSA bacteria? That means 2 out of 100 people have the bacteria. However, most of these people will never develop any infection and will never know that they have MRSA. You may be a carrier but do not worry because you many never develop an infection and even more interestingly, you may never know that you are a carrier.
2. People with Weak Immune System are at a Higher Risk: The sickly and the old are at a higher risk of developing MRSA infection due to their weak immunity. Those admitted in hospital, nursing homes or other healthcare facilities are also at a very high risk. Health facilities are known areas that MRSA thrives and hence staying in such facilities is a risk factor.
3. How MRSA is Transmitted: MRSA is spread by contact. Coming into contact with an infected person or clothes and other materials used by infected people can expose an individual to the bacteria leading to infection.
4. Avoiding MRSA infection: Now that MRSA is transmitted by contact, it is advisable to avoid any contact with infected persons or cloths used by such patients. However, with 2% of the population being carriers, it is almost impossible to avoid contact. Instead, adopt hygiene practices such as washing hands with antibacterial gels after visiting hospitals or toilets. Ensure that any cuts and open wounds are washed with soap and covered with a clean cloth all the time.
5. Screening and Treatment of MRSA: Screening of MRSA involves testing of blood, urine or sputum. The samples are cultured for drug sensitivity. MRSA is treatable and once the effective antibiotic is found, treatment and cure is possible. It is not however always advisable to wait till an infection becomes full blown in order to seek the treatment. If you suspect you have MRSA, seeking doctor’s opinion and possible test and treatment is highly recommended.
There You Have it. Those are some facts You Did Know! Below is a video of recent news broadcast featuring MRSA.