Skip to comments.Superbug Sweeps San Diego (Bacteria Has Potentially Fatal Effects)
Posted on 08/20/2006 12:52:40 AM PDT by nickcarraway
Bug bites are common in summer but a new super bug sweeping San Diego could have potentially fatal effects.
Local hospital emergency rooms are being jammed by patients who've been bitten by a strain of bacteria resistant to antibiotics.
Although the bites look they come from spiders, officials say they're much more harmful. Even worse: They're spreading so fast that the local emergency rooms are reporting at least one new infection per day.
The bacteria is called "metha-cillin resistant staph aureus'' -- or "MRSA" for short and while it looks harmless under a microscope, Scripps Mercy hospital epidemiologist Frank Myers III said it can potentially deadly.
"This particular strain is particularly nasty because it can make us sick it can cause skin infections and it's also resistant to many common antibiotics we use to treat it," Myers said.
According to Myers, the strain has been growing in strength in just the last few years.
"In 2002, we saw no cases of community associated MRSA. In 2006, we're now seeing over a case a day in our emergency room," Myers said.
MRSA is particularly fast growing but spreads even more rapidly -- and that's what worries Myers.
"We've seen family members have these boils be treated inappropriately, sharing towels or bars of soap and those can spread very effectively in household setting so instead of one case we now see an entire family," Myers said.
If left untreated, MRSA can disfigure and sometimes be fatal. The current strain in San Diego originated locally and is spreading throughout the community at a very high rate.
Although the strain is resistant to most antibiotics, Myers says some still do work but warns if you see a strange bite that doesn't seem to be healing to see a doctor right away.
"Ask [the doctor to] do a culture on it and then follow completely the guidelines for antibiotic use.
MRSA used to be spread a lot in locker rooms, especially among football players and wrestling teams. Now, Myers said babies are getting through a diaper rash and other family members are spreading it just by casual touch.
At Children's Hospital in Cincinnati there have been many cases of MRSA here recently. Also, cases of another resistant bug, although I can't remember the name of the thing.
My mother came home from the hospital with a MRSA infection. I was told by the doctors that alcohol is what kill's bacteria. Guess that is why 'Germ-X' etc. contains 82% alcohol.
Thank, I hadn't heard.
Journalism at it's best. Sheesh.
Local ERs are jammed by minorities and poor who tend to use ERs are their first contact with medical professionals regardless of seriousness according to studies.
Time to stock up on aloe vera and neosporin!
Hey, I was at the farm supply yesterday and they were OUT OF Terramycin! (animal tetracycline).
That never happened in all the years I been goin in there...
The grammar is atrocious. Makes this report almost unreadable.
Very interesting, but why isn't the bug doing the biting identified in the article?
MRSA has been present as nosocomial infectious agents for many years. Commonly acquired in hospitals. Methcillin has been a reserve drug for many years for Staphlococcus aureus, once that particular strain cultured from a patient was found to be resistant. So then they go to Methcillin. Now, methcillin is no longer efficacious against this particular strain.
Anyone for closing the borders? Nah, that would be racist (scratch, itch).
It is huge in the gay community.
Chest shaving and other illicity activities.
The sign in the emergency room at Harbor UCLA Hospital (Southern California) reads, "Waiting time is 19 hours." That is not a typo. You read it correct. 19 hours.
This is called CA-MRSA...that is, Community Acquired Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus...as compared to HA-MRSA...that is, Hospital Acquired MRSA which has been around for a while. As a retired nurse, I am not finding it difficult to see how HA became the 'mysterious'CA. I see nurses and other hospital personnel in the community in their 'scrub' uniforms. They go everywhere in these supposed 'uniforms.' I see them in restaurants, grocery stores, bookstores, office supply stores...everywhere. Everything they touch has the potential to carry unknown amounts of hospital-grade bacteria (the worst!)that can be picked up by anyone. I wish somebody in a position of authority could put this obvious 'two and two' together and insist that healthcare personnel not wear the same clothing in and out of the hospital. Call me old-fashioned.
You are absolutely right. I see people in scrubs all over the place from the supermarket to restaurants.
Staphylococcus aureus is already national.