oa SA Pharmaceutical Journal - Methicillin-resistant (MRSA)
What the pharmacist should know : review

Volume 76, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 2221-5875
  • E-ISSN: 2220-1017



Methicillin-resistance is clinically important because a single genetic element confers resistance to the β-lactam antibiotics, which include penicillins, cephalosporins and carbapenems. In the past 20 to 30 years, methicillin-resistant (MRSA) strains have been present in hospitals and have become a major cause of hospital-acquired infection. Comprehensive MRSA-control programmes that include screening cultures to detect patients colonised with MRSA, use of contact precautions, appropriate hand hygiene and automatic alerts of readmission of colonised patients have reported success in controlling or reducing transmission of MRSA and also reduced acquisition of MRSA in high-risk units in hospitals. Community-acquired MRSA (CA-MRSA) emerged worldwide in the late 1990s.

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