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Laryngoscope. 2012 Oct;122(10):2125-31. doi: 10.1002/lary.23435. Epub 2012 Jul 9.

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus sinusitis in nonhospitalized patients: a systematic review of prevalence and treatment outcomes.

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Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, New York, USA.



Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has been isolated from patients with acute rhinosinusitis (ARS) and chronic rhinosinusitis (CRS), although the exact prevalence is unknown. Similarly, the optimal treatment regimen for MRSA sinusitis has not been determined. The aim of this study was to summarize the existing data on prevalence and treatment outcomes for MRSA sinusitis in nonhospitalized patients.


A systematic review was conducted according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses guidelines.


MEDLINE, Embase, and Cochrane databases were queried for English-language studies published between 1942 and 2012. Studies were excluded that did not provide quantitative data on the prevalence or treatment of ARS or CRS with MRSA-positive cultures. An itemized assessment of the risk of bias was conducted for each included study.


Of 409 studies identified during systematic review, 12 studies met the criteria for analysis. The level of evidence and freedom from bias of these studies were generally low. The prevalence of MRSA among all culture isolates ranged from 0% to 15.9% for ARS and 1.8% to 20.7% for CRS. Six studies reported quantitative treatment outcomes using variable measures, in which resolution of infection ranged from 58.3% to 100%. The treatment regimens were heterogeneous and included single- and multiple-agent therapy with oral, topical, and parental antibiotics.


MRSA-positive cultures are found in a small but significant number of cases of ARS and CRS. Treatment of MRSA sinusitis may be effective, although treatment regimens and outcome measures are variable. Prospective studies utilizing standardized parameters are warranted.

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