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Date of last update: 10/12/2017.

Forum Name: Other infections

Question: Possible MRSA in sputum again???

 Stacey - Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:58 pm

Hi. I am an OT and had worked in a rehab inpatient hospital for 6 years. During that time, I had multiple UTI's cultured as MRSA, throat bacterial infection cultured as MRSA. I know all of us health care people probably are a carrier of MRSA. About 6 years ago, I continued running low grade fevers, very tired, achey, etc. After about a month, IM doc hospitilized me to figure out what was going on. CT of chest revieled "black stuff in my lungs" originally thought by pulmonoligist as infection from bat feces. Clot very easy. Clotted 4 (DVT's and couple of small PE's) during this hosp stay while on hepirin drip. Pulm did bronch wash and cultered sputum. Came back MRSA positive. In hospital for about 1 month with IV antibiotics. (Had worked with patient about month prior with trach who died from MRSA in lungs). Because I kept clotting, Inf Desiese doc decided more dangerous to stay in hosp to get vacn drip b/c clots. I worked with a patient about 4 weeks ago who was positve MRSA in lungs. Tested again yesterday and patient still positive, not colonized. I have been running the low grade fevers, achey, tired, nauseated, etc. for about a week now. Am I at higher risk of developing MRSA pnuemonia again since had it once and didn't go thru entire 3 mos vanc dirp? Worth going to IM doc for bloodwork? And if MRSA, would any results with bloodwork come back not WNL?
Thank you so much for your help!
Just a little nervous.
 John Kenyon, CNA - Sun Dec 14, 2008 10:18 pm

User avatar Hi Stacey -

As you say, we've all probably got it. MRSA acts like many viruses in the sense we can have it and not "have" it, but it puts us at a greater risk of having something sooner or later. Since pneumonia is peculiar in its tendency to "save up" irritants and infectious agents in the lower lobes of the lungs, having had this infection puts you at a statistically somewhat greater risk of getting it again, but you're equally likely to not have that. You could have it show up in some other body system, but the lungs are very popular with MRSA anyway. You also may never have another active infection. It's an extremely random problem.

I think it would be very wise indeed to be seen by an IM doctor for bloodwork, and if positive you will need to do the whole nine yards this time, especially because you put yourself, given your overall history, at risk of other, secondary problems if you wind up hospitalized for another MRSA infection. The more you can stay out of the hospital (at least in the role of patient) the better for you.

I hope this is helpful and that everything turns out fine. Please update us, and follow up with us here as needed.

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