Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) - Antibiotic resistant bacteria with a moderate threat level to human health - Antibiotic Research UK

MRSA – Antibiotic resistant bacteria explained Staphylococcus aureus – Antibiotic Research UK

Chris Garner Uncategorised Leave a Comment

MRSA – Antibiotic Research UK –

First Documented: 1884

Illness Caused: Pneumonia, Flesh Eating Disease

Antibiotic Resistance: Medium

Virulence: Dangerous

MRSA is a bacteria and acronym that stands for something the lounge does not want to twist its words around in your mouth, and after I write this will no doubt be cast into the confides of your mind only to be soon forgotten. So here it goes Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus.  Everyone has heard of this wee little germy and have been left slightly paranoid about hospitals.  Anyone remember Leslie Ash (actress in men behaving badly and married to Leeds United Old First Division winners in 1991 with Leeds United), well she was stricken with MRSA and it nearly cost her life.

MRSA Antibiotic Resistant Infection shows itself on the human skin

Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria MRSA infection on human skin - Antibiotic Research UK Charity

This bacteria superbug MRSA is spread very easily through human contact.  The symptoms of MRSA can range in magnitude but all sound pretty scary. They include skin disorders, like boils and pimples; if it gets into the blood stream it can begin to eat the flesh.  Other more serious disorders are deadly like meningitis and pneumonia.  The first discovery of MRSA was as long ago as 1864, when life expectancy in the UK was only just over 40.  In those days death by infection was common place as there was no antibiotic penicillin to treat people.  Penicillin as a widely available antibiotic was only prescribed by GP in the times of the Second World War around 1943.  Before this time infection was treated with antiseptics like alcohol, iodine etc.

Life expectancy in the UK since commercial Antibiotics were made available c.1935

Life expectancy growth graph in the UK since the discovery of Antibiotics in the late 1930s with the distribution of commercial penicillin

By the 1960’s because of the wonderfully versatile nature of all bacteria to mutate or evolve 80% of these MRSA superbugs become resistant to penicillin and other forms of antibiotics.  These were samples taken all from Hospitals too.  Since that time there has been a vastly organised and improved method in response to this by the NHS in both tracking the outbreaks or clusters of the bacterial infections and their overall levels of hygiene practices that are aimed at controlling antibiotic resistant bacteria.  This has seen overall rates of infection being reduced by 84.4% 84.7 per cent in the UK between 2003 and 2011, proving that prevention is often the best form of defence against bacteria.


Simple Preventative Methods in Hygiene to avoid MRSA