Pathophysiology: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a bacterium responsible for several difficult-to-treat infections in humans. It is also called oxacillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. MRSA is especially troublesome in hospitals, prisons, and nursing homes, where patients with open wounds, invasive devices, and weakened immune systems are at greater risk of nosocomial infection than the general public.S. aureus most commonly colonizes under the anterior nares.
Statistics: The prevalence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) carriage at hospital admission in the Netherlands was 0.03% in 1999-2000. The aim of the present study was to assess whether the prevalence of MRSA carriage in the Netherlands has changed over the last few years. In five Dutch hospitals 6496 unique patients were screened for nasal S. aureus carriage at hospital admission by microbiological culture between 1 October 2005 and 7 June 2007.
Treatment: Treatment of HA-MRSA frequently involves the use of vancomycin, often in combination with other antibiotics given by IV. CA-MRSA can often be treated on an outpatient basis with specific oral or topical antibiotics, but some serious CA-MRSA infections (for example, pneumonia) often require appropriate antibiotics by IV.
Major Research: Research suggests that certain probiotic strains may help reduce susceptibility to active infection with MRSA. Reduced diversity and strength of the gut microflora leaves us vulnerable to opportunistic infections, while Lactobacillus species such as paracasei and L. acidophilus as well as Bifidobacteria animalis subsp lactis have been seen to offer a degree of protection against MRSA.