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Int J Antimicrob Agents. 2006 Feb;27(2):87-96. Epub 2006 Jan 19.

Community-acquired methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infections.

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  • 1Office for Nosocomial Infections, Microbe Resistance and Strategy Concerning the Use of Antibiotics, Hellenic Center for Infectious Disease Control, Athens, Greece.


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) should no longer be regarded as a strictly nosocomial pathogen. During the past decade, community-acquired MRSA (CA-MRSA) infections among young persons without healthcare-associated (HCA) risk factors have emerged in several areas worldwide. These infections are caused by strains that almost exclusively carry the staphylococcal cassette chromosome mec type IV element and the Panton-Valentine leukocidin genes and, unlike HCA-MRSA strains, are not multiresistant. Although the majority of CA-MRSA infections are mild skin and soft tissue infections, severe life-threatening cases of necrotizing pneumonia, necrotizing fasciitis, myonecrosis and sepsis have been reported. Clindamycin is an effective agent for skin and soft tissue infections, however attention should be paid to the possibility of the emergence of resistance during treatment in strains with the macrolide, lincosamide and group B streptogramin (MLS(B))-inducible resistance phenotype. For patients with invasive infections that may be caused be CA-MRSA, vancomycin, teicoplanin and linezolid represent appropriate empirical therapeutic options.

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