Information about MRSA
What is MRSA?
MRSA is a type of Staphylococcus aureus or Staph. This bacteria is found naturally in all environments and on the surface of the skin.
MRSA stands for “methicillin resistant Staph aureus”, which means an antibiotic called methicillin is not effective in treating that infection.
But there are many other antibiotics that successfully treat MRSA.
MRSA most often causes a skin infection that is painful, red, and swollen. Infections appear as:
How is it transmitted?
MRSA is transmitted by direct skin to skin contact or contact with a shared item such as a towel, used band aid, athletic equipment, or surface with someone who has the infection.
MRSA is more likely to spread in settings when people have:
Contact with infected skin
Compromised skin such as cuts, scratches, and abrasions
Contact with contaminated items such as shared towels or soap
Lack of cleanliness and good hygiene habits
How do I protect myself?
Practicing basic good hygiene helps to protect you from infection. You should:
Keep your hands clean by washing with soap and water or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer frequently throughout the day.
Cover your cuts, scratches with a clean bandage. Change the bandage when soiled and/or wet and at least daily.
Wear flip flops in the shower.
Do not share personal items that come in contact with bare skin of other people such as soaps, razors, towels, and deodorant.
Use liquid soap instead of bar soap.
When working out in a gym with shared equipment clean the equipment before and after use with a disinfectant cleaner and place a barrier between you and the equipment such as a towel or clothing.
Do not go without a shirt in the gym.
Keep your home and room environment clean and disinfect surfaces with a solution of bleach and water or a Clorox wipe.
If I think I have MRSA what should I do?
- Contact the Stevenson University Wellness Center (443-352-4200) and your health care provider or as soon as possible.
- Keep wounds covers with a dry band aid.
- Wash down the shower and tubs after use with a fresh solution of bleach and water or a bleached-based bathroom cleaner.
- Continue to go to class unless advised not to by a health care provider.
For more information, visit the CDC MRSA Information Page