Last Updated 03 Jan 2023

Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus 

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When it first started to affect people, no one really knew exactly what it was or what was actually affecting a person to become ill. Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or better known as MRSA, is basically a bacterial infection. This type of bacteria is resistant, hence the name, to most types of antibiotics. The most common way to get it is to have an open cut, sore or any type of wound. Bring very highly contagious, it can be spread through direct contact with anyone that has it. Or even by coming in contact with a surface that someone who has infection touched. Though we know this now, when it first began to happen, its reason was a mystery.

The way that MRSA was discovered was from taking blood cultures and taking swabs of people's mouth. This was done for bacterial identification. (NEJM, 2012) In order to know what was the main reason why there was an outbreak, 43 laboratories from ten European countries each has screen 200 consecutive Staphylococcus aureus isolates for methicillin resistance. Once this was done, the MRSA isolates were sent to munich for reconfirmation and further susceptibility testing. It was concluded that out of the 7,333 Staphylococcus aureus strains that were screened, 939, which is 12.8 percent, were shown to be resistant to methicillin. Nearly sixty percent of the patients that were methicillin resistant, were shown to have gotten it from past surgeries and other medical encounters. (Nichols, 2017) During this, open wounds were the most common source of isolation. MRSA was more commonly found in patients who were receiving intensive care at the time. The way the people finally began to realize what it was, was through the use multiple of hospital onset cases.

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There are two main way that an individual can get the infection. Through a hospital and medical setting, hospital-acquired, HA-MRSA, or through the person's surroundings, community- acquired, CA-MRSA. Hospital acquired MRSA would be in any sort of medical environment, like a hospital or nursing facility, or through medical instruments that have not been completely sanitized as well as they should have, or contaminated clothes. This type or MRSA is known to cause severe problems like pneumonia and blood infections. The second type, CA-MRSA is acquired through having close and personal contact with another already infected person, or through direct contact with an open wound. It can also develop because of poor personal hygiene, such as not washing your hands as often as they need to be. (NEJM, 2012)

It may be a little to know if someone has it because the symptoms are very common for those of other diseases. Some of the symptoms for HA-MRSA include, but are not limited to; a rash, headaches, muscle aches, chills, fever, fatigue, cough, shortness of breath, and chest pain. While CA-MRSA usually cause the person infected to have skin infections. There are some areas that are more prone to infection such as the armpits or back of the neck. Areas that tend to have a lot of body hair.

Staphylococcus aureus is referring to a bacterium that is very commonly found on the inside of our noses and on the human skin. Nearly one in three people carry staph in their noses on a day to day basis, without any illnesses occurring. Two in one hundred carry MRSA

Just with any other open wound on your body, area that have cuts, scratches and so on are much more susceptible to any type of infection. When someone does get this infection, there are ways to treat it.

Both of the two types of MRSA are usually treated differently. HA-MRSA can be very severe and life threatening. For this type of MRSA, antibiotics are given through an IV, and depending on how severe of a situation it is, the IV can be in longer. CA-MRSA can usually improve by just taking antibiotics by mouth, but if the infection on the skin is large, the doctor may need to perform an incision and drainage. Basically cutting the skin open at the site of the infection and letting it drain out, which is usually done while the patient is under local anesthesia.

Annually within the United States, there is around 94,360 cases of invasive MRSA infections that are diagnosed. With that, there are around 18,650, associated deaths. Around 86 percent of all of the cases of invasive MRSA are said to been associated with healthcare in some way. (Nichols, 2017)

There are treatments and managements available but they have a list of depending factors such as; the severity of symptoms, the location of the infection, the type of infection, and which specific antibiotics the strain of MRSA responds to. Management would be; pus drainage from lesion, wound care and proper hygiene, culture and susceptibility testing of drained material, and antimicrobial therapy.

There are multiple different options when comes to medication for MRSA such as; clindamycin, tetracycline drugs- doxycycline and minocycline, trimethoprim and sulfamethoxazole, rifampin, and linezolid. The reason that there is not a lot of medication to be listed is that this disease is one that is resistant to many of the general types of antibiotics such as amoxicillin, penicillin, methicillin, and oxacillin. The infection being resistant to so many antibiotics makes it very difficult to treat.

There have been multiple studies all over the word that have been conducted in order to better help us understand what MRSA actually is. In one of those many studies,the survival of the resistant staph on a common hospital surfaces had survival rates on five types of materials that are commonly found in hospitals; 100 percent smooth cotton clothing, 100 percent cotton terry towels and washcloths, 60 percent cotton and 40 percent polyester blend such as scrubs uniform, lab coats and typical clothing.

Most of the invasive cases of MRSA infections can be greatly reduced by using germ-killing soaps and ointments that are used in intensive care units. Taking proper care in personal hygiene can prove to be very effective when trying to stay away from diseases. Getting a disease or allowing germs and bacteria to infiltrate the body is easy, but taking proper care and maintaining a clean safe lifestyle can be very difficult.

The reason that I chose to do this disease was because someone who was very close to me has recently passed away because of old age, and MRSA. Because of this, I wanted to know exactly what it was that had happened to him and why it wasn't cured. Knowing all of this now helps with the understanding and coping of it all, and it helped me realize what went on.

Works Cited:

Amin, M., Anwar, F., Janjua, M. R., Iqbal, M. A., & Rashid, U. (2012, August 09). Green Synthesis of Silver Nanoparticles through Reduction with Solanum xanthocarpum L. Berry Extract: Characterization, Antimicrobial and Urease Inhibitory Activities against Helicobacter pylori.
Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). (2018, May 23).
MRSA: Treatment, causes, and symptoms. (n.d.). Retrieved November 17, 2018
Nichols, H. (2017, November 13). MRSA: Treatment, causes, and symptoms.
Rapid Whole-Genome Sequencing for Investigation of a Neonatal MRSA Outbreak | NEJM. (n.d.). (2012)

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