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MRSA found at city college
BY SARAH HOFIUS HALL
STAFF WRITER
10/31/2007

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# Staphylococcus aureus, often referred to simply as “staph,” is commonly carried on the skin or in the nose of healthy people. Sometimes, staph can cause an infection. Staph is among the most common causes of skin infections. Most of these skin infections are minor and can be treated without antibiotics.

# Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) is a type of staph that is resistant to certain antibiotics. While 25 percent to 30 percent of the population carries staph, only about 1 percent normally carries MRSA.

# Most MRSA infections are treated by administering good wound and skin care. In some instances, antibiotics are also used to treat MRSA.

# Frequent hand washing is the best way to prevent getting and spreading staph and MRSA.
A Lackawanna College football player has been diagnosed with a MRSA staph infection, college officials confirmed Tuesday.

“Obviously it’s a cause for concern,” Lackawanna spokesman Kevin O’Hara said.

MRSA is an infection caused by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, commonly called “staph.” Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, is resistant to many antibiotics and in severe cases can be fatal. Staph bacteria are generally harmless, unless they enter the body through a cut or wound.

Several local schools have recently reported cases of MRSA, including Dunmore, Wyoming Area and Wilkes-Barre Area. Those schools have been disinfected, and no additional cases have been reported.

The University of Scranton had one student with MRSA earlier this semester, and that student was successfully treated with antibiotics, spokesman Stan Zygmunt said Tuesday.

At Lackawanna, areas of the college will be disinfected today, and students have been notified of the case.

For the college and school districts that have no reported cases of MRSA, steps are being taken to inform students of the infections.

Lackawanna College officials first learned of the football player’s infection Friday, after his doctor cleared him to go back to school. Football players were notified of the issue at that time, and the student had a relapse over the weekend. After the relapse, officials felt it necessary to alert all students. He has not returned to school and is now at home, Mr. O’Hara said.

Notices have been posted in dorms and in restrooms about proper hygiene, and all students were sent a memo about the situation on Tuesday, Mr. O’Hara said. The roommates of the infected student have been temporarily moved until a proper room cleaning can be done.

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