Community-Associated MRSA Infections Are Seasonal

Seasonal variation of hospital-associated methicillin-resistant S. aureus in children

MONDAY, April 4 (HealthDay News) -- During the summer and autumn months, community-associated methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) infections peak in all ages; whereas hospital-associated MRSA (HA-MRSA) peaks are seen in pediatric patients only, according to a study published March 23 in PLoS ONE.

Leonard A. Mermel, M.D., from the Rhode Island Hospital in Providence, and colleagues conducted a retrospective 10-year study by examining MRSA isolates submitted to the hospital's microbiology laboratory from 2001 to 2010. The number of emergency department visits, and quarterly CA-MRSA and HA-MRSA infections were calculated for the study duration.

The investigators found that, in the second two quarters of the year, there were nearly 1.85 and 1.14 times as many CA-MRSA infections per emergency department visit in pediatric patients and adult patients, respectively, compared to the first two quarters. In pediatric patients, but not in adult patients, nearly 2.94 times as many HA-MRSA infections occurred per hospital admission in the second two quarters of the years compared to the first two quarters.

"It is hoped that the current study will prompt further investigation into the seasonality of S. aureus infections to better understand the biologic basis for this observation," the authors write.

One of the study authors disclosed financial ties to the medical device industry.

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