Authors: 
Talan DA, Krishnadasan A, Gorwitz RJ, Fosheim GE, Limbago B, Albrecht V, Moran GJ, for the EMERGEncy ID Net Study Group
Publication Date: 
January, 2011
Abstract: 

BACKGROUND:

In the past decade, new methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) strains have emerged as a predominant cause of community-associated skin and soft-tissue infections (SSTIs). Little information exists regarding trends in MRSA prevalence and molecular characteristics or regarding antimicrobial susceptibility profiles of S. aureus isolates.

METHODS:

We enrolled adults with acute, purulent SSTIs presenting to a US network of 12 emergency departments during August 2008. Cultures and clinical information were collected. S. aureus isolates were characterized by antimicrobial susceptibility testing, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis, and toxin genes detection. The prevalence of S. aureus and MRSA and isolate genetic characteristics and susceptibilities were compared with those from a similar study conducted in August 2004.

RESULTS:

The prevalence of MRSA was 59% among all SSTIs during both study periods; however, the prevalence by site varied less in 2008 (38%-84%), compared with 2004 (15%-74%). Pulsed-field type USA300 continued to account for almost all MRSA isolates (98%). Susceptibility to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, clindamycin, and tetracycline among MRSA isolates remained greater than 90% in 2008. A higher proportion of MRSA infections were treated with an agent to which the infecting isolate was susceptible in vitro in 2008 (97%), compared with 2004 (57%).

CONCLUSIONS:

Similar to 2004, MRSA remained the most common identifiable cause of purulent SSTIs among patients presenting to a network of US emergency departments in 2008. The infecting MRSA isolates continued to be predominantly pulsed-field type USA300 and susceptible to recommended non-β-lactam oral agents. Clinician prescribing practices have shifted from MRSA-inactive to MRSA-active empirical antimicrobial regimens.

Tags: 
Skin and Soft Tissue Infections