MRSA Discussion Forum USA and Canada

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Reply #20 by JMJ
Posted: October 27, 2010 at 02:48
I am a nursing student, and while giving a bed bath the charge nurse and my clinical instructor came in with gowns and gloves on to tell me my pt. had just been diagnosed with MRSA in the urine. I was wearing gloves and did not actually come into contact with any urine. I always perform hand hygiene. I've been worried ever since. Am I at a serious risk?
Reply #21 by MRSA IN URINE
Posted: October 27, 2010 at 13:58
When my Mom's room mate had MRSA in urine, I contacted the Dept of Health. I learned it is easy to spread if after wearing gloves the caretaker does not wash her hands and up to where the gloves stop.

I also learned it is contagious if they go from one patient to another without wearing gloves.

This happens easily in a Nursing Home- an emergency may take the caretaker from one patient to another and they do not have time to put on new gloves.

The room mate was moved to another room at my request.

Also in another nursing home which was a much better one, I was told my Mom had Mrsa in urine and was in a room with someone else who had it.

I requested a test from our own urologist and their test was wrong. If your urologist goes to the nursing home, he/she can do this for you. Or you can request another test called a clean catch- they take the urine out with a small cathether- observing precautions of course.

In my state we have an ombudsman group called ALLIANCE FOR BETTER NURSING HOME CARE. If you have one in your state, you can call thema nd they will send some one to investigate. I used them at the former nursinghome and they resolved a lot of issues. Though I eventually transferred my Mom to the better Nursing Home.
Hope this helps

Reply #22 by ladyk
Posted: October 29, 2010 at 21:12

No fault of charge nurse/clinical instructor… concerning them coming to you directly to divulge necessity of precaution concerning a patient’s newly revealed diagnostic results. Potential for cross contamination is a risk that goes with the territory. Chances are at any given time many healthcare employees are colonized, just as many visitors are… including many human hosts who frequent the public arena are colonized. Stats reveal 30-50% of the population are nare colonized with MRSA bacteria.

If your concern rises to the level you are [“worried ever since”]… you might consider having nare culture to determine if you are colonized.

Precautions must be a conscious focus at all times especially in healthcare setting if one is to protect themselves and others from cross contaminating pathogenic contagions… always remember the rule - “protect me from them, and protect them from me.”

*If one is MRSA colonized they should refrain from going into healthcare settings until they decolonize, as they are the carrier of MRSA bacteria which can easily be spread to all, particularly detrimental to the immune compromised who reside in them!

Best wishes,

Reply #23 by anon
Posted: January 28, 2011 at 16:39
To all-

MRSA is a variation of staph bacteria that has developed resistance to the antibiotic class methicillin, of which vancomycin is a member of (i.e, Methicillin-Resistant Staph Aureus. Staphlyococcus (aka 'staph') is a type of bacteria that is present pretty much every where on the skin and on everyone. However, not everyone has MRSA, but its incidence is growing due to antibiotic use in healthcare settings as well as the emergence of community-acquired varieties. Bacteria have the ability to adapt to their environments and even share genetic material between different types of bacteria (thus resulting in stronger, more resistant bacterial strains).

Many people can be colonized with MRSA - this does not mean infection...and this is not a 'death sentence' by any means. Everyone is colonized with various staph organisms (among many other types of bacteria) and are not infected. Infection can occur when the bacteria gets into places that it normally should not (eg, urinary tract in a male, blood stream, skin abscess) and grows to a sufficient quantitiy that there is compromise to the body's normal functioning.

As already mentioned, hand washing is key. Carrier status can be determined by nasal swab, although there is some question of the effectiveness or utility of trying to 'erradicate' the carrier status. For those who work in health care settings, you undoubtedly have been exposed at some point in time. What can you do? Wash your hands, maintain your health through diet / excercise for a good immune system.

The significance of an MRSA infection is that one of the primary, strongest antibiotics normally used to treat staph infections - Vancomycin - is no longer effective at the concentrations able to be used. There are other antibiotics that can treat MRSA infections, however these also need to be used with care to minimize the risk of bacterial resistance developing to these drugs (and thus argues against treating all 'carriers').

Isolation is used in health care to help minimize the spread of the MRSA organism to other patients who are likely relatively immune-compromised. This can be effective in hospital settings in theory but is very difficult in practice because an individual with the presence of MRSA is likely colonized, not just where the bacterial culture was obtained, but also likely on their skin, etc. (just any of the other staph).

So...what do we do? For those of us that are able, wash your hands, especially after using the bathroom, touching your nose, using the bathroom. For those of us with loved ones who are colonized or infected, same thing. And clean things that are frequently touched by the hands (e.g., door nob, faucet) to help minimize risk of transmitting this, or other bacteria or viruses (just like for the influenza virus). If you have infection or colonization, talk to your health care provider. If you are still concerned, you can always ask to talk to an ID specialist to help answer your questions.
Reply #24 by anon
Posted: January 28, 2011 at 17:26
My sincere appology to a repeated error in two places in the above post-

#1. paragraph 1, line 1: Vancomycin is NOT a member of the methicilin group and MRSA is not resistant to VANCOMYCIN. Vancomycin is actually one of several drugs used to treat more difficult/severe MRSA infections. This should say that MRSA is resistant to the penicillin antbiotics such as ampicillin (often used to treat staph and strep infections).

#2. paragraph 4, line 2: Again, Vancomycin is used to treat MRSA and IS effective (although there is now a trend in hospitals to treat with higher doses of vancomycin than previous as prior doses are not as effective in some cases in clearing the infection).

My appologies again to all. It was not my intention to disseminate incorrect information in my multitasking hurry. And I hope that my post is not interpreted by those suffering from active/recurrent issues of MRSA infection as downplaying the severity or problems that MRSA can pose - it truly is a problematic organism. My post was simply an attempt to help address some of fear expressed by those who learn they are 'colonized' or 'exposed'. Best regards to all.
Reply #25 by Molly
Posted: March 19, 2011
I work in a group home and one of my clients has mrsa in her urine. We empty
her catheter bag into a urinal and then dump it in the toilet. If the urine is not
flushed and splashes up on to my vagina am I at risk for mrsa? I have been
paranoid about being infected ever since she first got mrsa and I have a 7
month old daughter at home.
Reply #26 by meg
Posted: July 27, 2011 at 18:14
I work in assisted living ~ we just found out that one of our residents came back from hospital with mrsa in her urine. We weren't
told for 4 days later whats the risk?
Reply #27 by Sandi
Posted: July 27, 2011 at 21:26
I got HA MRSA after ankle surgery. 36 surgeries later I lost my leg. I have also had in urine. I have to take Vanco to get it under control. Get a good ID doc and wear gloves and be sure you do not have a cut anywhere on your body that could come into contract with MRSA. Also one doc told me you never get cured it only get it under control. It can come back any time. You'll are in my prayers.
Reply #28 by BK
Posted: August 25, 2011 at 01:04
If you I visit a person with mrsa and have no contact am I at risk?
Reply #29 by pee
Posted: September 18, 2011 at 07:16
I have mersa n my leg n on an IV now @ home.
Went,2 c the Dr n he said I have it n my urine.
I have a bed stool I use @ night . Can me
breathing the air n the room make it travel 2
my lungs
Reply #30 by Becky
Posted: November 6, 2011 at 23:31
My mom caught a bug we believe after a stay in hospital. She was diagnosed with epidural abscess, which is terminal and consumed the entire spine. She is also paralyzed from the pubic area down, which is permanent. The last CT scan is clear of the entire spine,which they are all surprised about. She has now been diangosed with MRSA in her urine. She also has dementia. Our family is very upset. Now the social worker at the hospital called and asked for co-pay but no one at the hospital has had the decency to let our family know that our mother has contracted MRSA
Reply #31 by ladyk
Posted: November 7, 2011 at 18:54
Becky -

I'm very sorry to read about your mother's MRSA related struggles.

A couple of questions if you don't mind...
Did your mother go in hospital 'having no invasive procedure prior to finding' of epidural abscess? Did she have indwelling catheter prior to hospitalization?

Reply #32 by Glenda
Posted: November 12, 2011 at 20:56
My mother in law is recouping with us after surgery. She has mrsa in her urine. all the dr. said was wash your hands & sanitize everything. Is lysol enough or should I use pure bleach? Are the clorox or lysol wipes effective? If she has it in her urine & shes been living with us should we look for urine infections or can it be any type infection?
Reply #33 by ladyk
Posted: November 15, 2011 at 18:32
Glenda -

Concerning environmental decontamination of MRSA bacteria, my rule of thumb is... bleach clean all 'appropriate' surfaces. Studies reflect successful control. Personally speaking… I've used Clorox wipes in bathrooms when traveling (before & after), as a proactive precaution I wish to take. Lysol spray all ‘common touch sites’ such as light switches, door knobs, TV remote controls, etc. If you use the wipes be sure to understand the cloth can/does pick up MRSA bacteria (etc.), and must be disposed of properly to avoid cross contamination. Use gloves at home when cleaning & clean hands often.

It is true… “our hands provide bacteria the legs they need to cross contaminate the multitudes.” Global MRSA outbreaks are a good example of how cross contamination affects us as human host to this bacteria.

A separate bathroom for mother-in-law would ideal. She should also be aware that MRSA is a pathogenic contagion easily spread about herself and others. Everyone in household should become accustomed to washing hands often, and using alcohol based hand sanitizer. No sharing of personal items such as towels, razors, bar soap, etc. Wash her clothes and linens separately, using hot water and bleach when appropriate. As well, everyone in family might consider using Hibiclens antimicrobial cleanser (OTC at most pharmacies) - Hibiclens carries caution DO NOT GET INTO EYES & EARS. I find the ‘foaming’ pump easiest to work with.
Also (wanted you to know), Hibiclens will react with material washed in bleach - causing rust colored staining on towels, etc. But… since you need to wash mother-in-law’s clothes and linens separately, dedicate a few towels tagged as her’s only~. Periodically showering in Hibiclens will assist controlling pathogens on our skin that we come into contact with daily.

MRSA bacterial infections can manifest in an array of various infections. Strain is a factor. In your particular case I’d be ever mindful of nare colonization, urinary infections, topical lesion outbreak due to sitting on contaminated toilet seat.

Remember, MRSA bacteria remains viable on objects long after cross contamination occurred, awaiting next unsuspecting human host to come along and pick it up. Learn all you can about affliction, and how to safely control MRSA… this will serve you and your family best.

Below are a few links which you/family may find helpful.

Topical Care


Internal Care


Prebiotics - Probiotics


Universal Precautions

Best wishes,

Reply #34 by Shannon
Posted: December 2, 2011 at 16:47
I am 39, and had lithotripsy to remove a 7 mm stone, and suffered from an
inability to urinate. After surgery, the nurses swore I was "just" having bladder
spasms, so kept medicating me for that. Several hours later I was screaming
from the urgency, and after family intervention, finally got a foley. 1500 ml of
urine in a matter of minutes. After that, they would straight cath me "as
needed". I slowly got to where I could go on my own, but still had pain. Just
over Thanksgiving, I went in for another round of UA's, and they found MRSA in
my urine. (my lithotripsy was at end of October)
I'm a SAHM and don't have any contact with nursing homes or other health care
I have 3 children, all in school. I also have a 4 month old granddaughter. I'm
currently separated from my husband but praying for a miracle of reconciliation
every day.
I'm also, just since yesterday, feeling extremely under the weather with a sore
throat, headache, and only slight body aches (got a flu shot just prior to learning
of my MRSA).

I've read all the posts and I see how crucial hand washing is, but what else can I
do? Am I contagious to be around my kids and grandbaby, and potentially my
husband if he comes home?
Reply #35 by ladyk
Posted: December 6, 2011 at 16:55
Shannon -

In my opinion… since lithotripsy is a medical procedure that uses shock waves to break up stones in the kidney, bladder, or urethra this would be considered non-invasive… BUT being catheterized is not. It is quite likely this would explain the introduction of MRSA bacteria.

Are you being seen by an Infectious Disease specialist, and are you on susceptible antibiotic therapy to treat MRSA infection?

It is important for you to understand the gravity of MRSA infections, especially as it relates to your particular organ involvement.

Cross contamination is always a risk when we are afflicted with a pathogenic (disease causing) contagion. Therefore precautionary measures should be exercised. Consider urine contaminated. If possible use separate bathroom from other family members. Our hands are #1 most efficient way of passing contagions about, so practice diligent hand washing after personal care. Clean toilet seat with bleach after use. Wash your clothes separate from other family members, use bleach when appropriate. Lysol spray common touch sites… bathroom light switches, door knobs, etc.

Abstain from sexual relations while your urine remains MRSA positive, as it is quite easily passed to partner - *until your urine is re-cultured with negative results.

You may wish to consider garlic bath treatments as described by Bob Anderson on this forum.

Helpful Topics

Topical Care

Internal Care/Immune Support

Prebiotics - Probiotics

Read all posts within this thread.

Reply #36 by ladyk
Posted: December 6, 2011 at 17:01
Information which may help you proactively halt further kidney stone formation.

[Kidney stones form when a change occurs in the normal balance of water, salts, minerals, and other substances found in urine. Other chemical compounds that can form stones in the urinary tract include uric acid and the amino acid cystine. Dehydration through reduced fluid intake and strenuous exercise without adequate fluid replacement increase the risk of kidney stones. Some people are more likely to get kidney stones because of a medical condition or family history, as the tendency to form kidney stones may also be inherited. If other people in your family have had them, you may have them too.

The most common cause of kidney stones is not drinking enough water. Try to drink enough water to keep your urine clear (about eight to 10 glasses of water a day). Drinking grapefruit juice may increase your risk for developing kidney stones.

What are risk factors you can control?
If you think that your diet may be a problem, schedule an appointment with a dietitian and review your food choices. Vitamins C and D can increase your risk of kidney stones when you take more than the daily recommendations. Levels of calcium in the diet may also affect your risk of kidney stones. Getting the recommended amounts of calcium combined with a low-sodium, low-protein diet may decrease your risk of kidney stones. Diets high in protein, sodium, and oxalate-rich foods, such as dark green vegetables, also increase your risk for developing kidney stones.

Drinking Water to Prevent Kidney Stones
Drinking more water helps to increase the volume of urine. This in turn helps decrease the amount of stone-forming elements that build-up. Therefore, a common recommendation to help a kidney stone pass through the body more quickly is to consume close to a gallon (almost 4 liters) of water throughout the day. If you've previously had a kidney stone, drinking more water is a good way to prevent the recurrence of them.

Magnesium as a Natural Treatment for Kidney Stones
Foods that are rich in magnesium have been found to help prevent the development of kidney stones, since magnesium helps lower the amount of oxalate minerals in urine (oxalate is one of the main components of kidney stones). Good sources of magnesium are fish, rice, avocado, and broccoli. You can also help prevent stones from developing by reducing your intake of oxalate-rich foods such as chocolate, nuts, beans, spinach, grapes, strawberries, blueberries, and black tea.

Reducing Salt Intake to Prevent Kidney Stones
Eating foods that are high in salt and sodium have been found to increase the amount of calcium in urine, which increases the chances of developing a kidney stone. Therefore, a good guideline is to reduce daily salt intake to 2-3 grams. It is best to avoid high salt foods such as ketchup, mustard, luncheon meats, and snack foods such as chips and pretzels.]

Hope this helps.

Best wishes,

Reply #37 by JJolin
Posted: December 27, 2011 at 21:45
I recently found out that I have MRSA of the skin. I was told for several years by a doctor that it was just boils. I went along with it. Well I went to the hospital after my ear got very infected. They said MRSA. So if I get MRSA all over my skin, will I get it in my lungs and urine too? And asuming that I was contageous... what are the odds of everyone I have been around having it? What can I do to protect my children? Should I pop it and clean it then cover it with bandages? They left me out there... I dont know what to do! I am 25 years old and honestly in bad shape. For who knows what reason... I have a very low immune system. What can I do to just feel better? Please someone help me?! Thanks and God Bless!

Reply #38 by Mary Harris
Posted: January 1, 2012 at 18:04
We just found out that my husband has mrsa in the urine, I know that when you have mrsa it comes out like a boil, how do you know when you have a break out of mrsa in the urine. He also has had kidney stones is this related to mrsa in the urine. He is in the hospital now, should I go around and clean everything with lysol.
Reply #39 by Liz
Posted: January 20, 2012 at 06:43
I was scrached by someone with mrsa in the urine does that mean I have it
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