Older Age, Organ Impairment Associated With Increased Risk for Death From MRSA Bacteremia

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) bacteremia is often fatal. To determine predictors of risk for death, Pastagia, et al. (2012) conducted a retrospective cohort study, published in Emerging Infectious Diseases. They examined 699 episodes of MRSA bacteremia involving 603 patients admitted to an academic medical center in New York City during 2002 to 2007.

Data came from chart reviews, hospital databases, and recultured frozen MRSA specimens. Among the 699 episodes, 55 were caused by vancomycinintermediate resistant S. aureus strains, 55 by heteroresistant vancomycin-intermediate S. aureus strains, and 589 by nonvancomycin-resistant strains; 190 (31.5 percent) patients died.

The researchers used regression risk analysis to quantify the association between clinical correlates and death. They  found that older age, residence in a nursing home, severe bacteremia, and organ impairment were independently associated with increased risk for death; consultation with an infectious disease specialist was associated with lower risk for death; and MRSA strain types were not associated with risk for death.

Reference: Pastagia M, Kleinman LC, Lacerda de la Cruz EG and Jenkins SG. Predicting Risk for Death from MRSA Bacteremia. Emerging Infectious Diseases. Vol. 18, No. 7. July 2012