Community-onset MRSA rates decline

July 11, 2012

The rates of both community- and hospital-onset methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection appear to have decreased over the past five years, according to a recent study.

San Antonio - The rates of both community- and hospital-onset methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection appear to have decreased over the past five years, according to a recent study.

Researchers from San Antonio Military Medical Center at Fort Sam Houston conducted a study to examine the incidence rates of community-onset and hospital-onset S. aureus bacteremia and skin and soft-tissue infections (SSTIs) and the proportion due to methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA), Newswise.com reports.

The analysis consisted of an observational study of all Department of Defense TRICARE beneficiaries from January 2005 through December 2010. Medical record databases were used to identify and classify all annual first-positive S. aureus blood and wound or abscess cultures as methicillin-susceptible S. aureus (MSSA) or MRSA, and as community- or hospital-onset infections.

Investigators determined the annual incidence rates for community-onset and hospital-onset MRSA bacteremia decreased from 2005 to 2010, and the proportion of community-onset SSTI due to MRSA peaked at 62 percent in 2006 before decreasing annually to 52 percent in 2010.

“However,” the authors wrote, “the proportions of both community-onset and hospital-onset S. aureus bacteremia due to MRSA did not change significantly, suggesting balanced decreases in the rates of both MRSA and MSSA bacteremia. For community-onset MRSA SSTIs, no significant overall trend in annual rates was observed, but the proportion of community-onset SSTIs due to MRSA declined significantly.”

Study authors noted additional studies would be required to determine whether these trends would continue and which prevention methods would be most effective.

The study was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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