MRSA (Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus)

MRSA, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is a type of staph bacteria that is resistant to several antibiotics. In the community, most MRSA infections are skin infections. However in medical settings, MRSA can cause life-threatening bloodstream infections, pneumonia and surgical site infections.

Who Gets MRSA?
Anyone can develop a MRSA infection. It is estimated that 2% of the population are natural carries MRSA, usually without illness. MRSA is spread through direct contact with an infected wound or by sharing personal items, such as towels or razors, that have touched infected skin. The risk of MRSA infection is increased for those involved in activities that involve skin-to-skin contact and shared equipment or supplies (such as athletes), and for those who frequently visits places that involve crowding, such as daycare and school students and military personnel.

MRSA Symptoms
MRSA often presents looks similar to a spider bite. A person with MRSA infection may develop a bump or have an infected area of skin that appears:

  • Red
  • Swollen
  • Painful
  • Warm to the touch
  • Full of pus or other drainage
  • Accompanied by a fever

If you or someone in your family experiences these signs and symptoms, cover the area with a bandage, wash your hands, and contact your doctor. It is especially important to contact your doctor if signs and symptoms of an MRSA skin infection are accompanied by a fever. Click here to view photos of MRSA skin infection.

For additional information about MRSA infection risk for specific groups, please visit the following:

MRSA Information for Schools & Daycare Providers

MRSA Information for Athletic Teams

Cleaning and Disinfecting for MRSA