Staphylococcus Aureus
Staphylococcus aureus are bacteria commonly carried on the skin or in the
nose of healthy people. Approximately 25% to 30% of the population is
colonized (when bacteria are present, but not causing an infection) in the nose
with staph bacteria. Sometimes, staph can cause an infection. Staph bacteria
are one of the most common causes of skin infections in the United States.
Most of these skin infections are minor (such as pimples and boils) and can be
treated without antibiotics (also known as antimicrobials or antibacterials).
However, staph bacteria also can cause serious infections (such as surgical
wound infections, bloodstream infections, and pneumonia). [1]

Some staph bacteria are resistant to antibiotics. MRSA is a type of staph that
is resistant to antibiotics called beta-lactams. Beta-lactam antibiotics include
methicillin and other more common antibiotics such as oxacillin, penicillin and
amoxicillin. While 25% to 30% of the population is colonized with staph,
approximately 1% is colonized with MRSA. [1]

One study reported that family pet is an often-overlooked source for recurrent
staph infections. A German woman repeatedly battled the same strain of
drug-resistant superbug MRSA until her cat was tested and treated. The lady
had deep abscesses, or boils, all over her back. Antiseptic washes and
antibiotic nasal ointment killed the germ in the other family members, but the
woman was still infected. Four weeks after the apparently healthy cat was
treated with antibiotics, the woman was free of MRSA and her abscesses had
all healed. [2]

Several previous cases of MRSA infections in dogs/pigs and their owners have
been reported. [2]

[1]Community-Associated MRSA Information for the Public CDC March 12,
[2] Report: Woman, cat shared staph bug Associated Press Writer 1 hour, 34
minutes ago

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