MRSA stands for methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus that is a type of bacteria that causes infection in the body. These infections often occur in patients in hospitals and other healthcare facilities, like nursing homes, dialysis centers, and more. In such cases, it is referred to as a healthcare-associated infection (HAI) or a healthcare-associated MRSA (HA-MRSA). These types of infections are be spread in these facilities by improper sterilization procedures and often occur in patients that have had invasive treatments. These treatments can include surgeries, intravenous lines (IVs), ventilators, catheters, or artificial joints.
Have you or someone you love suffered a MRSA or hospital infection? Talk to an attorney at the Law Offices of David A. Kates, PLLC if you believe medical negligence has occurred. Call (718) 866-3664.
Symptoms & Causes of MRSA Infections
Various types of the bacteria that cause MRSA exist and can be commonly found on the skin of many people in society. These bacteria are typically harmless except when they are introduced into the body through a cut or other wound. In healthy people, however, this generally causes little or no consequences. However, hospital or other healthcare patients, who often have a lowered immune system at the time due to illness, surgeries, advanced age, or other medical treatment are more vulnerable to infection.
The danger involved in a MRSA infection is that it resistant to common antibiotics and so becomes much more difficult to control. As a result, the infection can spread to various parts of the body and, in the worst cases, it can become life-threatening. This resistance is believed to have been caused by the overuse of antibiotics in the population. Antibiotics cannot eliminate all bacteria they are used for, leaving those that survive stronger and more able to resist other antibiotics as well.
A MRSA infection becomes dangerous when it begins to spread through the body and affect such areas as the bloodstream, the heart, joints, lungs, bones, and more. MRSA infections can lead to pneumonia, infections at a surgical site, to sepsis (an intense reaction of the body to infection), or death.
Prevention of MRSA Infections
Healthcare facilities and hospitals have a responsibility to prevent these dangerous infections. This can be done through the implementation of thorough and proper disinfection and hygiene procedures. These procedures can be emphasized through training, policies, education to caregivers, facility risk assessments, and more. For example, protocols need to be established for the sterilization of surgical tools and medical devices that are inserted into the body. Other care and regimens may be needed in post-operative situations and in long-term care in nursing homes to prevent infection. Where failures of such actions have occurred, it may be a sign of medical malpractice.
Need Legal Recourse?
If you or a family member has suffered a MRSA or other hospital infection while receiving health care, you may have a case for a medical malpractice claim or lawsuit. At the Law Offices of David A. Kates, we can help you explore available options and determine how you should proceed. Our firm has more than two decades of experience in this field. We know how to build cases, go to trial, and how to hold accountable those responsible for the unnecessary suffering and damage done to others.
Reach out to our firm at (718) 866-3664 to learn more about where you stand in a free consultation.