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How serious is Staph infection?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 1978
Answered : 6714 Questions
Sorry for the long post.... About a year ago I noticed a hard lump on the inside of my nostril and it seems to come and go even to this day. I went to the doctor but they never seem to find it but it is clearly there and painful. A few months following I began to have horrible marks that look a lot like acne all over my chest. This past August I got a large puss filled boil under my armpit and I was given antibiotics and it soon burst and went away but I continued to get tiny lumps under both armpits. A few weeks ago I got another boil under the other armpit and another much larger boil on my hip. They have both since exploded and drained and the one on my hip has left a hole the size of a dime on it. Four days ago I went to the doctor and they did a culture on it and put me on Levofloxacin 250mg and Mupirocin 2% Ointment 22GM. Today the doctor called and said that the culture came back positive for Staph but negative for MRSA. They told me that it is not contagious but I haven't gotten to have a full conversation with my doctor yet and just wanted a second opinion especially because I'm hearing all different things. I wanted to ask how serious this infection is and also if it is contagious. Also is there a chance that the bump in my nose that they couldn't find was a part of this. Thank you for your time.
Posted Wed, 29 Jan 2014 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Pavan Kumar Gupta 3 hours later
Brief answer....given below Detailed answer.... Hello, Thanks for the query. Staph is a common type of bacteria living on skin and mucous membranes ( eg. In nose ) of humans.Staph aureus is the most important of these bacteria in human diseases.About 15-40 per cent of healthy humans are carriers of Staph.aureus,which means having bacteria on skin but without any active infection. Despite being harmless in most people,S,aureus is capable off causing various infections of skin and other organs. Most infections take place in normal individuals but certain underlying conditions increase the risk of infection,like... Poorly controlled diabetes Malnutrition Anaemia Alcoholism Intravenous drug users People with HIV/ AIDS People using steroids or immunosuppressants. Now coming to your querries. 1st...Generally not serious but can result in severe illnesses specially if you are having low immunity and conditions as mentioned above. 2nd is contagious and can be passed to others. 3rd....your nose bump definitely looks part of it. Take proper precautions,keep washing your hands repeatedly,take bath twice daily,avoid touching your wounds with your hands,change and wash your towels several times a week,wash your clothes and bed linens regularly. I hope it helps,however you may revert to me for any further query. Best of luck Thanks
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