MRSA causing kids' bone infections

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted July 21, 2008

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Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus is the culprit in an increasing number of bone infections among those ages 2 to 11 and is much more challenging to treat, according to a study in July/August Journal of Pediatric Orthopaedics.

Researchers reviewed the records of children admitted with this problem to Children's Medical Center of Dallas from January 1999 to June 2001 and compared them to those treated from July 2001 to December 2003. In the first period, 6% of infections were caused by MRSA, but this number increased to 31% in the second time span. The bacteria was associated with an increased risk of relapse and longer hospitalizations. Children infected with it also spent more days on antibiotics and were more likely to require surgery.

"What's important about this is not only that MRSA infections are harder to treat because they are more resistant to the traditional antibiotics, but they are also more aggressive and cause more severe disease," said Octavio Ramilo, MD, senior author and professor of pediatrics at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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