Navigation Links
Woman and Cat Shared 'Super Bug'
Date:3/12/2008

Researchers think it's likely woman was first infected with dangerous germ,,,,

WEDNESDAY, March 12 (HealthDay News) -- People share their homes, their food and more with their pets, but one thing you probably never thought you could share with your animals is a drug-resistant staph infection.

However, according to a letter in the March 13 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, a German family appears to have done just that. Doctors were puzzled when a woman was repeatedly treated for methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), yet still kept coming back with the infection.

Eventually, they discovered that the family cat was harboring the dangerous bacteria, sometimes called a "super bug."

"Animals and especially pets or companion animals might serve as reservoirs for human-pathogenic bacteria," said Dr. Andreas Sing, head of the department of infectiology at the Bavarian Food and Health Safety Authority in Germany.

Before you give puss the boot, know that researchers believe it was the woman who probably initially transmitted the bacteria to the cat, not the other way around.

About 25 percent to 30 percent of Americans are colonized with staph bacteria, but only about 1 percent are colonized with MRSA, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most MRSA infections occur in health-care settings, such as hospitals or nursing homes, but the number of community-acquired infections is growing. According to the CDC, about 12 percent of all MRSA infections are now acquired in the community.

MRSA spreads through skin-to-skin contact with an infected person, but its transmission has also been associated with contaminated surfaces, crowded living conditions and poor hygiene, according to the CDC.

MRSA infections often look like a boil or an inflamed pimple, and may be red, swollen and draining pus, the CDC said.

The German woman was otherwise healthy, but kept getting multiple, deep abscesses. Both the abscesses and nasal swabs tested positive for MRSA. Her family members -- a husband and two children -- were also tested, and they tested positive on several occasions. Nasal ointments and antiseptic washes were prescribed for the family to "decolonize" them.

The family members then tested negative for MRSA, but the woman kept testing positive. Doctors then tested the woman's three cats, and found that one, despite having no symptoms, was carrying the same strain of MRSA. Once the cat was decolonized and both the cat and woman were retreated with antibiotics, all family members -- human and feline -- tested negative for the bacteria.

Sing and his colleagues pointed out that this is the first documented MRSA infection in a cat, although there have been reports of other animals, including dogs, harboring MRSA.

Because this infection is generally community-acquired, Sing thinks it's more likely that the woman initially transmitted the bacteria to her pet, and then the animal passed the infection back to her.

"Cats are social. They like to rub up against people and it's the skin-to-skin contact that passes MRSA," explained Dr. Matthew Sims, director of the infectious disease research program at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Mich.

But, he added, "People shouldn't start worrying about having pets. They can carry all sorts of things which we've known about forever, but you don't need to get rid of your cats or other animals."

Sims said that if you suspect you might have a MRSA infection, go to your doctor for treatment and let your doctor know if you have other people or pets in your household so your doctor can recommend appropriate treatment or prevention steps for them.

The best way to prevent these infections, Sims said, is to practice good hygiene and wash your hands frequently. If you know you have a MRSA infection, avoid direct contact with other people and animals until you've been treated.

More information

To learn more about MRSA, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.



SOURCES: Andreas Sing, M.D., head, infectiology, Bavarian Food and Health Safety Authority, Germany; Matthew Sims, M.D., Ph.D., director, infectious disease research program, Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, Mich.; March 13, 2008, New England Journal of Medicine


'/>"/>
Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Humor and Hope Sustain NJ Woman Through Disabling Movement Disorder, Election Campaign
2. Frances Winfield Bremer, Wife of Ambassador L. Paul Bremer, III, to Become Spokeswoman for the National Fibromyalgia Association
3. Womans Hips Might Indicate Daughters Breast Cancer Risk
4. Early HRT Protects a Womans Heart
5. Neuromuscular Dentistry Ends Womans Migraines
6. Disabled Sacramento Woman, 110, Receives Power Wheelchair Donation from The SCOOTER Store
7. Womans Day Presents the 5th Annual Red Dress Awards Honoring Women Who Are Leaders in the Fight Against Heart Disease
8. Congresswoman Norton, Mayor Fenty, Verizon and the Washington Wizards Join the Test for Life Campaign to Encourage HIV Screenings in DC
9. NIH, Gates Foundation to support Riley Hospital and MoiU Program For Woman and Infant Health Researc
10. Congresswoman Sutton Leads National Effort to Place Life-Saving AEDs in Americas Schools
11. Stress may increase a womans risk of developing cervical cancer
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Woman and Cat Shared 'Super Bug'
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... ... years, Doctors on Liens has published a directory of the top doctors working ... When the company started in 1997, the directory was a single page focusing on chiropractors ... directory features a vast array of medical specialists stretching from Sacramento to San ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... Center for Autism and ... of those affected by autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and other developmental disabilities. The group, ... will give parents and other caregivers the opportunity to share stories and advice, seek ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... Mediaplanet’s newest campaign, ... standing as living proof that attitude and determination can combine into the most ... spike around the holidays. This campaign will offer patients a new-found hope, by ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... ... December 02, 2016 , ... ... version of its SaaS LIMS, CloudLIMS Lite. CloudLIMS Lite helps biobanks, clinical, research ... labeling, storing, shipping and disposal. The new version is a faster and a ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... Wexford, PA (PRWEB) , ... December 02, 2016 , ... ... manages stress and overall health, day and night. No other wearable health technology on ... management. We wanted to give poeple more meaningful insights about their health than ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/2/2016)... , Dec. 2, 2016  LifeVac, the revolutionary ... included in the Emergency Response Training and Support Services ... excited to have LifeVac become part of the ERTSS ... Founder and CEO of LifeVac. "Having an established network ... and effectively will help leverage our efforts to spread ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... -- PipelineRx, a leading medication management technology company focused ... its SaaS-based telepharmacy platform, PowerGridRx™ , at ... Clinical Meeting and Exhibition, December 5-7 in ... hospital clients nationally, the Company is a leader ... improve pharmacy operations, enhance patient safety, and reduce ...
(Date:12/2/2016)... 2, 2016  Maxor National Pharmacy Services, LLC ("Maxor"), today ... Inc. ("PSI").  The combination of Texas -based ... -based PSI bring together both company,s clinical expertise and high-touch ... an industry-leading specialty pharmacy. About Maxor ... , , ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: