Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, commonly known as staph, are very common. It is "a spherical gram-positive parasitic bacterium of the genus Staphylococcus, usually occurring in grapelike clusters and causing boils, septicemia, and other infections." In fact, many people have some living on their skin all of the time and it can cause infection anywhere in the body. There are antibiotics that have been known to kill this bacterium. Unfortunately, there is a new form of staph infection called community associated methicillin resistant staphylococcus Aureus (CA-MRSA). This infection is a rising concern because there is no antibiotic that has been known to cure it. CA-MRSA is found on the skin, in the nose, in the blood, or in urine. It can spread through physical contact but that doesn't mean you will get the infection. The bacterium usually enters the body through an open cut or break in the skin. It can cause minor infections such as boils or pimples and far more serious infections like pneumonia or blood infections. The symptoms for CA-MRSA are very similar to other forms of staph infections. The skin will generally appear red and inflamed around the wound sites. Symptoms in more serious cases can include fever, lethargy, and headache. CA-MRSA can cause urinary tract infections, pneumonia, toxic shock syndrome, and in some cases death
CA-MRSA is diagnosed much like strep throat. A culture is taken of the wounded area that is suspected of infection. The wound is swabbed and taken to a lab where it is allowed time to grow, to see if there is the staph bacteria. Most staph infections can be cured by the antibiotic methicillin; except for CA-MRSA. There is no antibiotic known to work for CA-MRSA. Doctors have different ways of approaching this infection. Many doctors drain the wound, while others use drugs like Bactrim, Pfizer, and Zyvox.