Cases of MRSA reported in Lexington

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Some cases of MRSA have been reported lately in Lexington, according to the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department.

"We've received several reports at the Health Department of MRSA in the community so we're trying to take a proactive approach to let people know the steps they can take to keep from getting sick from this," says Kevin Hall with the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department.

MRSA, which stands for Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, is resistant to many antibiotics.

Health officials say staph infections, including MRSA, are usually found among people in health care facilities who have weakened immune systems.

However, officials say these kinds of infections are becoming more common in people who haven't been to a health care facility.

While infections such as MRSA often cause skin infections such as boils and abscesses, officials say they can also cause more serious infections such as pneumonia or blood infections.

Officials say MRSA can be treated, but it's difficult to cure, so prompt recognition and treatment is important.

"What happens is if you get a wound or cut, the staph infection can get into your body and causes some problems," says Kevin Hall.

The Lexington-Fayette County Health Department provided the following tips to help prevent the spread of MRSA:

" Wash your hands. Use warm, soapy water, and if that's not available, use alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Shower immediately after exercising. Keeping clean and practicing good hygiene can help stop the spread of MRSA.

" Don't share items such as clothing, towels, razors, bars of soap or other personal items. Don't share sports equipment. Again, practicing good hygiene is essential here.

" If you have a cut or wound, be sure to keep it covered with a clean, dry bandage until it has healed.

" Regularly clean frequently touched surfaces and surfaces that come into direct contact with people's skin. Use rubbing alcohol or a diluted bleach solution. Mix one tablespoon of bleach into a quart of water. The solution must be in contact with a surface for a minimum of two minutes for effective disinfection.

For more information, you can call the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department at 231-9791, or click on the link attached to this story.

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