Earlier this week, we took our eight year old son in to see the doctor. He had what can only be described as a boil on his left forearm, and it was clearly infected. We’ve dealt with our fair share of things like impetigo in the past, and this was clearly different.
As soon as the doctor saw it, she uttered the phrase that we had been fearing… MRSA. That’s the shorthand for a nasty, drug-resistant bug known as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. She couldn’t say for certain without culturing it, but she was quite sure we were dealing with MRSA.
How to get rid of MRSA
The recommended treatment regimen was:
- A ten day course of oral antibiotics (Bactrim; sulfamethoxazole-tmp)
- Regular treatment with a topical antibiotic (Bactroban; mupirocin)
- Adding a half cup of bleach to his nightly bath
- To the extent possible, we’re supposed to “express” (squeeze out) the pus – lovely, huh?
To prevent spread, we’ve been keeping it covered with with a large band-aid, which we’ve been changing regularly, washing our hands religiously, and keeping him dressed in long-sleeved shirts.
As far as school attendance goes, our doctor advised that we just keep it covered and send him back. MRSA is (apparently) pretty much everywhere nowadays, and his presence doesn’t present any unique risks to his schoolmates.
Officially diagnosed: MRSA
As far as the official diagnosis goes, we got a call from the doctor just before 5PM this afternoon. The test results were in, and… Yes, it’s MRSA. The good news is that this particular strain does respond to Bactrim, and he’s on the mend.
As for how he got it, we have no idea. More than likely, he had a bug bite that came into contact with it and the infection developed from there.