Description: Using antibiotics for staph infection is one of the option. However, there are chances that you might have some kinds of MRSA which can be rather hard to treat…
Staphylococcus aureus is the most dangerous of all of the many common staphylococcal bacteria. These bacteria are spread by having direct contact with an infected person, by using a contaminated object, or by inhaling infected droplets dispersed by sneezing or coughing.
Skin infections are common, but the bacteria can spread through the bloodstream and infect distant organs. Skin infections may cause blisters, abscesses, and redness and swelling in the infected area. The diagnosis is based on the appearance of the skin or identification of the bacteria in a sample of the infected material. Thoroughly washing the hands can help prevent spread of infection.
Antibiotics are chosen based on whether they are likely to be effective against the strain causing the infection.
Staphylococcus aureus is present in the nose (usually temporarily) of about 30% of healthy adults and on the skin of about 20%. The percentages are higher for people who are patients in a hospital or who work there.
People who have the bacteria but do not have any symptoms caused by the bacteria are called carriers. People most likely to be carriers include those whose skin is repeatedly punctured or broken, such as the following:
- People who have diabetes mellitus and have to regularly inject insulin
- People who inject illegal drugs
- People who are being treated with hemodialysis or chronic ambulatory peritoneal dialysis
- People with skin infections, AIDS, or previous staphylococcal bloodstream infections
- People can move the bacteria from their nose to other body parts with their hands, sometimes leading to infection.
Carriers can develop infection if they have surgery, are treated with hemodialysis or chronic ambulatory peritoneal dialysis, or have AIDS.
The bacteria can spread from person to person by direct contact, through contaminated objects (such as gym equipment, telephones, door knobs, television remote controls, or elevator buttons), or, less often, by inhalation of infected droplets dispersed by sneezing or coughing.
Many strains have developed resistance to the effects of antibiotics. If carriers take antibiotics, the antibiotics kill the strains that are not resistant, leaving mainly the resistant strains. These bacteria may then multiply, and if they cause infection, the infection is more difficult to treat.
Whether the bacteria are resistant and which antibiotics they resist often depend on where people got the infection: in a hospital or other health care facility or outside of such a facility (in the community).
Because antibiotics are widely used in hospitals, hospital staff members commonly carry resistant strains. When people are infected in a health care facility, the bacteria are usually resistant to several types of antibiotics, including all antibiotics that are related to penicillin (called beta-lactam antibiotics). Strains of bacteria that are resistant to beta-lactam antibiotics are called methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).
MRSA strains are common if infection is acquired in a health care facility, and more and more infections acquired in the community, including mild abscesses and skin infections, are caused by MRSA strains.
- Sometimes surgical removal of infected bone and foreign material
Infections due to Staphylococcus aureus are treated with antibiotics. Doctors try to determine whether the bacteria are resistant to antibiotics and, if so, to which antibiotics.
Infection that is acquired in a hospital is treated with antibiotics that are effective against MRSA: vancomycin, linezolid, tedizolid, quinupristin plus dalfopristin, ceftaroline, telavancin, or daptomycin. If results of testing later indicate that the strain is susceptible to methicillin and the person is not allergic to penicillin, a drug related to methicillin, such as nafcillin, is used. Depending on how severe the infection is, antibiotics may be given for weeks.
MRSA infection can be acquired outside of a health care facility. The community-acquired MRSA strains are usually susceptible to other antibiotics, such as trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, clindamycin, minocycline, or doxycycline, as well as to the antibiotics used to treat MRSA infections acquired in the hospital.
Mild skin infections due to MRSA, such as folliculitis, are usually treated with an ointment, such as one that contains bacitracin, neomycin, and polymyxin B (available without a prescription) or mupirocin (available by prescription only). If more than an ointment is required, antibiotics effective against MRSA are given by mouth or intravenously. Which antibiotic is used depends on the severity of the infection and the results of susceptibility testing.
If an infection involves bone or foreign material in the body (such as heart pacemakers, artificial heart valves and joints, and blood vessel grafts), rifampin is sometimes added to the antibiotic regimen. Usually, infected bone and foreign material has to be removed surgically to cure the infection. Abscesses, if present, are usually drained.