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Worried sick that I may have caught MRSA?

Nurses   (13,302 Views | 67 Replies)
by 8Lovenursing8 8Lovenursing8 (Member)

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Luchador has 5 years experience as a CNA, EMT-B.

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I love nursing but I'm a bit OCD and a germaphobic.

What attracted a germaphobe to nursing?

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Well ever sense MRSA went wild it's estimated that about 10% if the population is colonized. I'll cite my source later but proper hand hygiene is the ticket.

Well I won't hold this up as hard proof of anything, but what he said or what she said that has now become urban legend certainly isn't proof either.

Another

Either way, 4, 5, 10, 20% or even 50% is a far cry from going around saying all HCWs are colonized with MRSA.

Are people conflating MRSA with staph aureus? And even if they are:

General population: "Studies show that about one in three (33%) people carry staph in their nose, usually without any illness. Two in 100 people carry MRSA." CDC

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hppygr8ful has 15 years experience and specializes in Psych, Addictions, Elder Care, L&D.

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Ok I stand corrected the actual percentage of the population estimated to be colonized by MRSA is 1% according to the CDC. The attached link to the MRSA fact sheet states that just getting MRSA on you skin does not usually result in infection as it has to come in contact with an open wound or body fluid exchange. On a side not 25% of my son's football team got infected last year when MRSA was impregnated into the astroturf on the field. It was a huge mess. The problem being turf burns from being tackled The whole team had to be treated and the field treated as well now we've found it as well as ring worm spores on the wrestling mats. I think I'll stay in a nice hospital where people wash their hands.

For the life of me I can never figure out why self described germaphobes go into nursing. It's common knowledge that you are going to be in close contact with sick people. Still I have been a nurse for a long time and have never caught anything from a patient. I don't even really worry about it as I practice standard precautions.

CDC - MRSA and the Workplace - NIOSH Workplace Safety and Health Topic

Hppy

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Tomascz has 5 years experience as a ASN, RN and specializes in Wound care; CMSRN.

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Germ-a-phobe in the nursing business? Hah! MRSA isn't resistant to Doxy and all your zits will dry up besides. It even kills Yersinia pestis!

Not to be glib, but you need to be practicing some serious hand hygiene. There are bugs out here that do not have cures and patients don't wear armbands or tattoos to warn you. You screwed up and MRSA is the least of your worries. At least you didn't transmit nec fasc to some immune compromised 30 year old. You need to be more considerate of your patients. Just say'n.

Edited by Tomascz
Grammar

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Yeah.

Anyone raise your hand if your hospital has swabbed your nose to test? I didn't think so.

They do not want us swabbed because what would they do with us? Have nurses dressed in HazMat suits all day? The hospital does not want to know and why swab your nares? Be on isolation precautions and rarely see staff because they have to put on PPE from head to toe to walk in the room since that colonized MRSA in most nurses' nares is going to leap out and attack. No thanks, I'd refuse swabbing but, of course, I'd be put on iso for refusing.

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ICUman specializes in Cardiac Cath Lab.

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Many times, with vented patients. Still TB free. Tb is pretty hard to catch though, you need to be breathing their air for many hours

Really? Interesting. How do you know the exposure must be for "many hours"?

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City-Girl has 20 years experience.

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I am always amused when a patient is admitted w/ any hx of MRSA we put them on precautions. Sometimes the patient's MRSA isn't discovered until a few days into their hospitalization. When they are discharged these same people walk down the street with the rest of society, ride the T and touch the fruit and vegetables at the grocery store. I feel it's highly likely that many people are colonized and we don't know about it because not everyone is screened for it.

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Sour Lemon has 9 years experience.

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Really? Interesting. How do you know the exposure must be for "many hours"?

I thought that was pretty widely known/believed. I've known pulmonologists who go into TB rooms without so much as a mask. They're more concerned about sitting next to a TB patient on a ten hour bus ride.

I wear the mask, myself.

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ICUman specializes in Cardiac Cath Lab.

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I thought that was pretty widely known/believed. I've known pulmonologists who go into TB rooms without so much as a mask. They're more concerned about sitting next to a TB patient on a ten hour bus ride.

I wear the mask, myself.

Well I recently cared for an intubated TB patient and the infectious disease doctor entered the room completely gowned up and N95 in place.

I'm just curious. I hadn't heard that before is all.

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Our ID team follows cases of exposure and they've stated you would need ~24hours of constant exposure to be at risk.

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Well I recently cared for an intubated TB patient and the infectious disease doctor entered the room completely gowned up and N95 in place.

I'm just curious. I hadn't heard that before is all.

Maybe the intubation made them more cautious. Infectiousness for tb is a function of the granulomas eroding into the airways, releasing bacteria, so maybe the mechanical breathing would make that more pronounced.

But anyway, I learned that one of the less understood aspects of tb is why some people can have extensive exposure to tb and be fine while others are not as lucky (barring any immuno-compromising differences between them). Even though the chances of not catching it are in one's favor, I'm sure as heck wearing the n95.

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