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MRSA/HIV
Nov 16, 2006

My partner is HIV+, and myself HIV-. We believe my partner has picked up MRSA from the Hospital visiting a sick relative. This has been a reoccurring infection since April 2006. His Doctor has prescribed Bactrum after the initial inspection of each infection. The lesion becomes much more aggressive each time. Some have had to be lanced and some have been scrubbed cleaned, everyday until the lesion has abscessed and popped.

I am searching for a second opinion for this Infection. Is Bactrum the only answer? The reason I havent had a second opinion yet, is our Dr. is the head of the HIV research here.

Thanks in advance.

Response from Dr. Wohl

MRSA stands for methicillin resistant staph aureus. It is a bacterium that is resistant to many antibiotics used to treat staph infections. It is not particularly more virulent or aggressive than non-resistant staph, just harder to treat.

We are seeing a lot of MRSA skin lesions in people - both with and without HIV infection. Close contact spreads staph well. So it is little surprise that we see MRSA in wrestlers and between sexual partners.

There are some approaches to trying to control MRSA that are advocated. Use of Bactroban, an antibacterial ointment in the nostrils for a week of every month for 6 months PLUS showering regularly with Hibiclens or another surgical type of skin disinfectant PLUS washing clothes, towels and sheets in hot water AND never using a towel for more than a single day (ditto for undies, of course) may help.

Actual abscesses generally need drainage. Long term antibiotics are not recommended in most cases.

DW



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