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January 2011
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IDSA Releases Guideline for Treatment of MRSA Infections

IDSA’s first-ever practice guideline for the treatment of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections in adults and children is now available. The guideline can be found online and also appears in the Feb. 1 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases.

The IDSA guideline addresses a variety of infections caused by MRSA commonly encountered by ID specialists, emergency room physicians, pediatricians, primary care physicians, hospitalists, pharmacists, and other health care providers. Topics include:

  • how to manage skin and soft tissue infections likely caused by community-associated MRSA;
  • how to treat recurrent skin infections;
  • recommendations regarding use of vancomycin and other antibiotics used for the treatment of MRSA;
  • how to manage invasive infections, such as pneumonia, and infections in the bones, joints, blood, or heart;
  • how to treat newborns who are infected with MRSA.

“MRSA has become a huge public health problem, and physicians often struggle with how to treat it,” said Catherine Liu, MD, lead author of the guideline and assistant clinical professor in the Division of Infectious Diseases, University of California, San Francisco. “The guideline establishes a framework to help physicians determine how to evaluate and treat uncomplicated as well as invasive infections. It’s designed to be a living document, meaning the recommendations will evolve as new information and antibiotics become available.”

In addition to the treatment recommendations, the guideline identifies critical gaps where funding of research is needed to advance clinical treatment and care of MRSA infections. Several performance measures for internal performance improvement for the management and treatment of such infections are also included.

The guideline was reviewed and endorsed by the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society (PIDS), the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP), and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). 

The guideline is available online and in a pocket-sized quick-reference format (see related IDSA News article). Other IDSA guidelines also are available on the Standards, Practice Guidelines, and Statements page of our website.
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