Hospital acquired outbreak of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus infection initiated by a health care worker


Salima Ben Ayed
Ilhem Boutiba-Ben Boubaker
Jalel Boukadida
Samia Hammami
Saida Ben Redjeb


Background: Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) has become an increasingly important pathogen leading to hospital acquired infections.
Aim: This study was done to confirm an outbreak of MRSA suspected at Charles Nicolle Hospital.
Methods : From 26 April to 11 June 2002, six patients hospitalized in the dermatologic ward at Charles Nicolle hospital of Tunisia have developed infections caused by MRSA. An investigation of the outbreak has been detected a nasal carriage nurse. This carrier received topical mupirocin treatment to decolonize the anterior nares
and the outbreak was stopped without further incident.
Results Typing of the MRSA strains by pulsed field gel electrophoresis demonstrated the same pulsotype shared by all isolates showing that MRSA isolates belonged to a single clonal type responsible of outbreak. Colonized nurse was the source of MRSA dissemination.
Conclusion: This report illustrates the risk of nosocomial outbreak linked to cares delivered by the staff personnel. More sensibilisation and the respect of strict hygienic measures should be emphasized.


Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA),, nasal carrier, Outbreak, Pulsed field gel electrophoresis (PFGE)



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