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USA300, deadly strain of superbug MRSA, increasing in the UK

Published on 02/02/2012

Potentially deadly strains of MRSA that can be passed between people outside of hospitals are increasing in the UK, warn experts.

In a new research paper published in the Journal of Infectious Diseases, scientists have analysed the way community acquired MRSAs are able to adapt and spread outside hospitals.

Community-acquired MRSA strains have different cell walls to those seen in hospitals, and don’t rely on healthcare workers moving them around like hospital ones seem to.

USA300 is one of these strains, which is causing huge problems in America and is being increasingly reported in the UK.

USA300 causes large boils on the skin, and can lead to a flesh-eating form of pneumonia that erodes lung tissue. It also puts the sufferer at risk of fatal blood poisoning.

The infection passes easily through skin to skin contact and can survive on surfaces, giving it the potential to be picked up on crowded buses and tubes.

More worryingly, USA300 is resistant to treatment by several front-line antibiotics.

Dr Ruth Massey of the Department of Biology and Biochemistry at the University of Bath said there were 1,000 cases of PVL-positive community acquired MRSA in England in the last year.

Experts now say that we need to be extra vigilant about hygiene and unnecessary use of antibiotics.

If you are worried about superbugs compare health insurance online now to make sure you are covered for the best healthcare available in the UK.

© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2012

Categories:  Medical
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