Recognizing MRSA Symptoms
MRSAMany people are familiar with MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, a bacteria that can quickly develop into a potentially life-threatening skin infection if left unchecked. It’s commonly spread in healthcare settings, such as hospitals, and is quickly becoming more common in certain communal areas, such as nursing homes or day care centers, where there is a higher percentage of people with weakened or suppressed immune systems.
MRSA is very resistant to most antibiotics, which makes it a challenge for medical professionals to treat. Are you familiar with the symptoms of MRSA? This dangerous bacteria can turn into a lethal infection if left unchecked, so it’s wise to understand the signs of MRSA before it becomes dangerous.
MRSA can start out in something as simple as a sty; it’s an infection of the eyelid’s gland, and it’s frequently red and painful. While many sties aren’t MRSA related, those that are will become increasingly red, with a great deal of swelling and an open sore actually in or around the sty. If your sty doesn’t heal by itself after three days, or if you find the sty is growing increasingly worse, it should be checked by your family physician as soon as possible to eliminate the possibility that it is MRSA.
Impetigo, a low-grade staph infection, can be either a sign of impending MRSA or an entry point for the MRSA bacteria. Impetigo exhibits a cluster of blisters on the skin which ooze pus, develop yellow crust, and bleed; this condition is highly contagious, and if it is actually MRSA it will be very difficult to treat as it is resistant to many antibiotics. If you notice a cluster of little wounds or open sores, be sure to have your doctor check it out right away to ensure the rash is properly treated before it spirals into something more serious. Abscesses and boils are potentially dangerous, too; if an open wound is exposed to the MRSA bacteria, it won’t heal on its own and it will get bigger. If you notice this, seek immediate treatment.
The most dangerous part of MRSA is the speed with which it can spread to other parts of the body; it starts on the skin, but can quickly move to the bloodstream, the lungs, the heart muscles, the urinary tract, the kidneys and bladder, and more. An infection to the lungs can cause pneumonia, which can be life-threatening to people who are already suffering from immune-system disorders. If the MRSA spreads to the bloodstream, it can cause septic shock, which is often lethal.