Prevalence of Community-acquiredMethicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus in aPrivate Dermatology Office

August 2008 | Volume 7 | Issue 8 | Original Article | 751 | Copyright © August 2008

Aaron M. Bruce DO, James M. Spencer MD MS

Background: The prevalence of community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) skin and soft tissue infection (SSTI) in private practice dermatology offi ce is largely unknown and the prescribing of antibiotic treatment could be infl uenced by such data.
Objective: Investigators sought to examine the period prevalence of CA-MRSA infections involving skin and soft tissue in a suburban private practice dermatology setting.
Methods: Chart reviews of 170 patients who had bacterial cultures taken from January 2007 to November 2007 were performed, with an analysis of sex, age, immune status, species of growth, type of lesion, and culture site.
Results: The mean age of the study population was 54.0 years (SD 21.8) and 51.1% were male. Of the 170 cultures taken, 135 (79%) grew 1 or more bacteria and MRSA positive cultures were found in 28 (21%) of 135 cultures.
Limitations: Only 1 geographic location was represented.
Conclusion: The rising rates of CA-MRSA skin and soft tissue infections should be evaluated with consideration of the unique populations that the majority of reports represent. There is little doubt that the prevalence of skin infections caused by CA-MRSA have increased dramatically and will likely continue to do so in the future. However, the authors caution the empiric prescribing of antibiotics presently known to be effective against CA-MRSA and advocate the culturing of all infectious lesions upon presentation and reserve these antibiotics (tetracyclines, trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole [TMP-SMX], clindamycin, rifampin) for the treatment of high-risk patients and patients with culture proven CA-MRSA infections.