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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

4/23/2014 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

New York City homes found to be deadly reservoirs of drug-resistant superbug

The anti-biotic resistant "superbug" known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA for short, is a deadly drug-resistant bacteria that plagues mostly hospitals. A new report has found that bacteria can now incubate in private residences, meaning that our own homes are no longer safe. 

Bedding, clothes and other everyday surfaces used by someone affected by MRSA are suggested to be cleaned by bleach and hot water.

Bedding, clothes and other everyday surfaces used by someone affected by MRSA are suggested to be cleaned by bleach and hot water.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/23/2014 (1 year ago)

Published in Health

Keywords: MRSA, homes, study, infection


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - MRSA is resistant to many of the strongest antibiotics. Usually found in hospitals and nursing homes, the recent study found 161 New York City residents who contracted infections from their own homes.

The majority of MRSA strains are skin infections that are spread by physical contact. The sharing of towels or razors are common means of transmission. Athletes, military barracks, prisons and other close-quarter living areas pose the highest risk of spreading the bug.

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention notes that in medical facilities, MRSA causes life-threatening bloodstream infections, pneumonia and surgical infections.

"What our findings show is it's also endemic in households," lead researcher Dr. Anne-Catrin Uhlemann, of Columbia University Medical Center in New York City, says.

According to a report released by the center last year, more than two million Americans get drug-resistant infections each year. Of those, about 23,000 die from these diseases that are increasingly resistant to the strongest antibiotics physicians have in their arsenal.

Samples were taken from those affected by MRSA strains along with samples of a comparison group of people who had not fallen ill. Researchers then took samples from these patients' household surfaces and other social contacts to see if the bacteria had spread.

Research proved that many homes outside of just those affected by MRSA were "major reservoirs" for the MRSA strain, USA300, the primary cause of MRSA infections in communities throughout the country.

Bedding, clothes and other everyday surfaces used by someone affected by MRSA are suggested to be cleaned by bleach and hot water.

Uhlemann says the role of surfaces in transmitting the disease is not "well delineated . We can't just treat the person with the infection," Uhlemann says. "We have to attempt to remove the (MRSA) colonization from the home."

Correct bandaging, protection of wounds, and hand-washing were suggested by experts as the best ways to protect family members and others who one may come in physical contact with regularly, thereby spreading the bacteria to others.

The CDC has estimated that nearly one-in-three people carry staph bacteria in their nose, and typically feel no symptoms of sickness. About two percent of people carry MRSA.

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