Symptoms, Causes And Treatment Of Staph Infection

There are various types of Staphylococcus, but most of the infections are caused by Staphylococcus aureus or the S. aureus. These bacteria usually harbor in the armpits, buttocks and inside the nose of humans. The infections caused by S. aureus come under two categories, viz. skin infections and invasive infections.   Some common staphylococcal skin infections include boils, impetigo and cellulitis. These boils appear as red bumps, usually on the face, neck, thighs, buttocks and armpits and they cause pain. This infection takes place at the hair follicle. Pus formation takes place, but ultimately it is drained out when the boil bursts. Impetigo is another condition which is highly contagious. Non-bullous impetigo causes sores. These sores rupture rapidly and yellow-brown crust forms on the skin. Bullous impetigo causes blisters that are large in size, but painless. The sores and blisters caused by impetigo have the symptom of itching usually. Infection can spread to other parts of the body if these sores or blisters are scratched. The third type of staphylococcal infection called cellulitis infects the deep layer of the skin and the subcutaneous tissues. Therefore the skin swells with red color, causing pain. The symptoms associated with cellulitis are high fever, shivering, nausea and chills. Eating contaminated food can cause staphylococcal food poisoning, the symptoms of which include nausea, vomiting and abdominal cramps. Diarrhea can occur in some cases. These symptoms may last for 24 hours. 

 

Invasive staphylococcal infections have some uncommon symptoms, but they are serious. Sepsis, known as blood poisoning, develop symptoms including high fever, fast heartbeat, fast breathing, low blood pressure, confusion, diarrhea, low urination, pale and clammy skin and sometimes loss of consciousness too. These symptoms require immediate medical attention. The S. aureus bacteria can also cause toxic shock syndrome, which is but rare. In this condition the symptoms include vomiting, skin rash, diarrhea, fainting, muscle aches, confusion and dizziness. Another condition caused by S. aureus is septic arthritis, having symptoms such as high fever, joint pain and red and tender skin around the joint. S. aureus can also cause endocarditis, the symptoms of which include high fever, chills, sweats, muscle aches, chest pain, coughs, shortness of breath, fatigue, and weight loss.  

The staphylococcal bacteria spread out in the air, reach the skin and cause infection. These bacteria can enter the body through damaged skin or an inflamed hair follicle or any infected site on the body. Eating contaminated food can cause staphylococcal food poisoning as these bacteria produce a toxin. Invasive staphylococcal infection can occur if your immune system is weak or if you have a deep wound or if you use medical equipment that goes inside in your body. Health conditions such as HIV, alcohol abuse, diabetes and intravenous drug abuse can weaken the immune system, paving the way for staphylococcal infection. 

For preventing staphylococcal infections, you should maintain hygiene religiously. Wash your hands regularly and keep the wounds properly covered. Do not come in contact with the materials used by the infected persons. Eat properly cooked food. Keep the cooked foods at the correct temperature. Avoid smoking and using illegal drugs so that your immune system does not become weak.



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