MRSA - What the Heck?

Updated on May 02, 2008
S.B. asks from Winthrop Harbor, IL
15 answers

My 20 month old daughter is starting to come down with her second bout of MRSA. The first time she got it was about 3 months ago and she was on oral and topical antbiotics which worked almost immediately, we also had to do bleach baths for 5 days. This worked beautifully, but now she's starting to get the rash again, 3 months later. Her ped wants to see her again so we're going Friday. Has anyone else had any experience with MRSA and are we going to have to deal with this all her life? Poor thing.

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D.S.

answers from Chicago on

S.,

So sorry you are having these problems. If you can, keep her away from hospitals or any one that works at them. Hospitals are teaming with it.

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R.T.

answers from Champaign on

Good question. Almost my whole family has dealt with atleast one. I got the first one about 3 years ago and let it go a few days too long before I went to convenient care to see what was going on. It had to be lanced and drained. They sent a culture to the lab but all they could tell me was that it was a staff infection. After my 3rd one in that same year and 2 of the kids each getting one I finally saw an article about MRSA and had to show it to my doctor who knew nothing about it. Now we just make a phone call in for antibiotics but neither my adult medicine provider nor the kids preditrician can tell me anything more about why were getting them.

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W.S.

answers from Chicago on

S.,

I'm sorry your little girl has to go through this. I am surprised at the number of other posters here who have also experienced this!

I just wanted to share that I heard on a radio program just recently that MRSA can be transmitted between pets (dogs / cats) and humans and if you are having re-occuring MRSA in your family to have your pets tested by the Vet because they can carry it, infect and re-infect humans. Pets can also be treated with antibiotics to clear it.

I wish you all the best,

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S.H.

answers from Chicago on

I haven't dealt with MRSA in children, but I work as a critical care nurse and have dealh with in adults. Once we have a patient that has had MRSA once we test them for it every time they come back to the hospital because it is so hard to get rid of. Some people are able to get rid of it, but for others it is a very long process. We also now test everyone admitted to the hospital for MRSA when they're admitted whether or not they ever been diagnosed with it because of the community aquired form. It may be something she has that lies dormant for a period of time just to flare up occassionaly. Good luck---hope you can get rid of it!!

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D.K.

answers from Chicago on

Hi S.,

Yes, you definitely can get rid of MRSA. My husband, daughter and I all had it. It started as a staph infection on my leg that was mis-diagnosed. By the time my husband had a staph infection on his leg and our daughter had bumps on her behind, they got the clue. After 3 doses of heavy antibiotics each, medicated soap, changing the sheets 5 days a week, shampooing carpets every weekend and keeping our bodies completely covered all the time, we were cultured and it came back negative. Only if you've had it for a very long time - undiagnosed - can you have it for life.
But...if you have any animals, they can potentially give it back to you. Studies in Canada and England have proven that dogs & humans can retransmit it back and forth unless they are treated simultaneously. Cats can get rid of it themselves, as they will clean the germs off of their fur and, during ingestion thru their body, it dies. Animals have different skin bacteria than humans, which is why the MRSA doesn't attack them the way it does us.
Also, OCD washing of hands is a MUST!! Turn 'Monk' paranoid and the chances of catching it again are slim, since it is spread thru contact.
But keep your chin up! It will all be over soon :)

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A.K.

answers from Chicago on

Hi S. - my son and husband have had a couple of bouts of this, too. However, we're not certain if it is MRSA, as they haven't yet been tested (they need to test the fluid). There was a good article in BabyTalk last month about it and how to disinfect things, etc. One of the problems it seems is there is too much antibiotics being given, killing off the weak bacteria and allowing the strong bacteria to get stronger and thrive. you might also try getting in with a dermatologist.

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L.Z.

answers from Bloomington on

You will never get rid of mrsa. once you have it you will always have it. I am sorry to say. There is a soap that they will you everyday of her life it is called phisohex.

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E.J.

answers from Chicago on

Oh S.. The memories I have of MRSA. I was on contact precaution for three weeks in the hospital prior to having my son (my water had broken at week 23) and at week 26 my son was born and I was able to get out of the glove/gown room, however my son spend a lot of time in the NICU on contact precaution. We couldn't touch him skin to skin for the first three weeks while they ran cultures until he and I both came back negative. Anyhoo, enough background information. Both of us were on heavy duty antibiotics, specifically Vancomyacin for me, Vancomyacin and Gentromyacin for little one. Plus I had to bath in Hibacleanse, which is a liquid soap used by surgeons prior to proceedure and swirl a Q-Tip with an antibiotic ointment in both nostrils two times a day. Finally we both cultured clean as whistles, so it's possible to be MRSA free, however it's just as possible to be exposed to MRSA again and have to go through the cycle again. Ugh.

Here's a little tid bit of information for you. For as much fuss as the medical community/hospitals make about MRSA, if you cultured hospital/medical clinic staff, including nurses and doctors, more than half of them would come back MRSA positive. But if you dare go into a facility and are identified MRSA positive, you are treated like you have the plague. Ain't that something. Bleh. Sorry for ending on a rant.

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A.P.

answers from Chicago on

My daughter has mrsa at 4 weeks in her groin area. She was hospitalized because of her age. They did tell me she would have it for the rest of her life.Its a scarry thhing to have to deal with.. Good Luck to you and your daughter..

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T.R.

answers from Springfield on

MRSA is carried in the nose and skin on anyone and someone can be infected with out other symptoms. I have had a friend's daughter with it that was 6 years old and now I work in a group home setting that has had a few cases. Just keeping all areas cleaned and keeping a good eye on the problem is the only advise I can give you also check out this site if you haven't already and the best of luck to you and your daughter.
http://pediatrics.about.com/od/mrsa/a/mrsa_prevention.htm

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E.J.

answers from Rockford on

Bathe with hibicleanse every day, wash hands often, cover all cuts no matter how small and clean everything, especially bedding, etc in hot water and use the dryer. Make sure you use the full course of antibiotics. I don't think this is a life-long thing. I know of a baby who had multiple infections, but now hasn't had anything for almost three years. He also had a nasal swab checked and wasn't colonized with MRSA. Good luck to you and your daughter.

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S.S.

answers from Springfield on

My husband had MRSA 3 times in 4 yrs. DO NOT LET YOUR PED TREAT THIS DEADLY DISEASE. SEE AN INFECTIOUS DISEASE DOCTOR, PLEASE. Sorry about the caps but with a young child this is very important. Are you sure of the type of staph infection? Who told you it was MRSA? They must take a culture and have it sent off, usually takes 24 hours. Talk? ###-###-#### or [email protected]____.com

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M.B.

answers from Chicago on

Dear S.,
Have you ever tried visiting a chiropractor or a natural doctor or someone similar that can help you build up her immune system? Sometimes building the immune system is the best defense against any type of infection. That is why antibiotics can be just as harmful as they are helpful--they tend to weaken your immune system. The handwashing is good but I wouldn't over do it with antibacterial soap...I've read it kills off the good bacteria that you need to stay healthy.

May God Bless Your Little One.

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B.W.

answers from Chicago on

S., Our daughter was infected with MRSA when she was 8 days old and apparently got infected in the hospital when she was born. It took them a while to figure out what it was and she had to get a spinal tap which was awful, but once they did figure out that it was MRSA the antibiotics did the trick. Children's Memorial did not tell us when we were discharged that she would need to be retested and receive 3 negative cultures to be taken off the "MRSA watchlist" and we didn't find out we had about the retests until she was a year old. I am not sure if you have done the restests, but those may be helpful as I think after 3 negative cultures you know for sure that the MRSA is out of her system. Luckily, we've received the three negative cultures, but this whole experience was extremely stressful. I worked with the folks in infectious disease at Children's and they were amazing. You might want to try to contact them to get additional information as I don't think everyone is still not very well informed on MRSA. I feel awful for you and hope your little one is doing okay-poor little peanut.

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P.B.

answers from Chicago on

My son almost died of MRSA at 8 weeks old - he lost 20% of his weight in 24 hours. It took the doctors far too long to figure out what it was. Ours was a nightmare experience, but a very strong antibiotic (Bactrim) saved his life. Seeing an infectious disease specialist who prescribed it was what helped us. The regular doctors just didn't know what to do.

Hope your experience is much better and more quickly treated since you know what you're dealing with.

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