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ORL J Otorhinolaryngol Relat Spec. 2001 Mar-Apr;63(2):87-91.

Possibility of reciprocal infection of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus between medical personnel and patients undergoing middle ear surgery.

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Department of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery, Korea University, Seoul, Korea.


The incidence of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infection after middle ear surgery has recently increased in our hospital. In this study we tried to determine whether the strains of MRSA isolated from infected patients are identical to those obtained from medical personnel, to prove a reciprocal transmission between medical personnel and patients. Surveillance bacterial cultures of medical personnel were performed from the anterior nares and from the fingertip. Molecular epidemiological studies, ribotyping and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis (PFGE) were used to compare the 12 MRSA strains obtained from carriers among medical personnel with the 60 strains identified from patient's otorrhea. Six different MRSA strains were identified from ribotyping, and three subtypes from PFGE. There was a particular subtype which was the most frequently identified strain found in both medical carriers and patients. Postoperative MRSA infection rates after the treatment of medical carriers and application of preventive procedures decreased from 11.9 to 5.7%. These findings suggest that the MRSA transmissions have occurred between medical personnel and patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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