Rare VRSA case confirmed in Delaware

 A magnified look at VRSA, which has only infected 14 people in the country. (Photo courtesy CDC)

A magnified look at VRSA, which has only infected 14 people in the country. (Photo courtesy CDC)

A 67-year-old Delaware woman is recovering at home after contracting the rare staph infection.

The woman, who health officials will only say lives New Castle County, is expected to recover.

VRSA is short for Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and is very rare. The Delaware case is only the 14th case of VRSA in the United State’s. It’s the fourth case in Delaware. The Division of Public Health reported two cases in 2010 and one in 2012. DPH leaders don’t believe the cases are linked.

A VRSA case happens when a patient’s Staphylococccus aureus infection mutates. That mutation can make the bacteria resistant to Vancomycin, an antibiotic used to treat staph infections like MRSA.  

It’s difficult to treat VRSA using other antibiotics because the bacteria is also resistant to other treatments including antibiotics in the penicillin and cephalosporin families.

To prevent the spread of VRSA, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends health care providers to use proper infection control practices like wearing gloves and adhering to hand hygiene methods.

 

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