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Staph Skin Infection from Library

 
 
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 04:12 pm
I caught a Staph infection, apparently from the public library where I work, in mid-June.

This was right after I found out me and my 5 co-workers would be terminated when the library went "County" on Sept. 30th. (Stress? Why, yes!)

Apparently I scratched an insect bite, inside the library (red ant?), and with the Staph under my fingernails, which is all over public places, infected myself.

Within 48 hrs I had a 102.0 fever (and I'm 47). 13 lesions all over my body. Great Big Fun.

I got treated with 10 days of Keflex, followed by an injection of (er, was it Rocephin?) the next day from my regular Dr.

Lesions healed while I followed a strict regime of antibacterial soap showers, antibiotic ointment on lesions, covering lesions, bleaching sheets/towels/clothing/floors/bathrooms.

Now, almost 2 mos. later, the original lesions have apparently become re-infected.

Went to regular Dr. yesterday (8/11). They took a culture (ready Fri., 8/14) and put me on Bactrim.

I'll find out Friday, with Dr. visit, whether this new pussy/red stuff is Staph or something else.

At least I have NO fever on this round, nor do I have the tell-tale red "fingers" creeping away from the newly-infected lesions.

I'm both annoyed and depressed.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 6 • Views: 2,424 • Replies: 22
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dlowan
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 04:46 pm
@BorisKitten,
Oh ****.

I hope it is a nice treatable staph.

At least your doctor knows enough to vary the antibiotic.

When I had cellulitis, on round six of antibiotics, I had to say to mine that it seemed pretty clear to me that the remaining bugs were the hell resistant to what we had used so far, and didn't it make sense to change?

Threee more rounds of different antibiotics, and it was gone.

It's good you have no fever, and no infection movement.

I hope the cultures really help target the little buggers, and it is all over nice and fast.

Like I said, it can take a ridiculous amount of treatment to get rid of these infections, so don't go despairing and such.

ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 04:48 pm
@dlowan,
listen to Bunny.

Meantime, how very shiteroo.

Calm..
0 Replies
 
littlek
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 05:14 pm
Boriskitten, this sounds horrible! I'm so sorry.
0 Replies
 
djjd62
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 05:33 pm
staph is not good

a friend of my mom's broke her leg last fall while golfing (slipped on wet grass)

she required a pin in her leg, while recovering in the hospital she picked up an infection, her recovery from the infection was worse than the operation
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 05:40 pm
@djjd62,
I've got an article somewhere (I hope) re the USC football locker room and staph - a whole prescriptive routine they went through to ward it off, which I suppose could be adapted for libraries.

I'll see if I can find it. Meantime, I hate all this kind of paranoic carefulness.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Wed 12 Aug, 2009 05:42 pm
@djjd62,
There's staph and staph.
0 Replies
 
sullyfish6
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 06:26 am
Be careful of MRSA.

Also, how can you have gotten it from the library? Can bacteria live on books?

I'd wear gloves all the time, when dealing wth the public.

You may have had this in your system for a while. hope you can get a complte immune system check-up.
JPB
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 06:44 am
sending moral support to BK!

I hope the second time is the charm on clearing out the little buggers for good.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 08:04 am
@sullyfish6,
sullyfish6 wrote:
Also, how can you have gotten it from the library? Can bacteria live on books?


staph commonly lives on the surface of our skin and our mucous membranes. Doesn't cause us a problem til it gets into our blood stream.

http://dermnetnz.org/bacterial/staphylococci.html

There was recently an interesting (?) piece about flip flops as a staph carrier.

http://www.nydailynews.com/lifestyle/health/2009/08/11/2009-08-11_flipflops_are_a_magnet_for_dangerous_deadly_bac.html



(I wondered when I first read it if regular sandals are any safer)
mismi
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 08:12 am
@ehBeth,
Beth said
Quote:
There was recently an interesting (?) piece about flip flops as a staph carrier.

http://www.nydailynews.com/lifestyle/health/2009/08/11/2009-08-11_flipflops_are_a_magnet_for_dangerous_deadly_bac.html



(I wondered when I first read it if regular sandals are any safer)


Oh no. I love my flip flops....Beth - I would think any shoe, sandal, flip flop, Croc, that leaves your feet - especially if there is an open would near them - open to the germs that get on the sole of the shoe, would be a risk. I am pretty sure that I will be foolish and choose to forget I read this. I love my flip flops. I said it twice for emphasis.

Boriskitten - I hope you see an end to this soon. It sounds awful. I just never realized how scary germs can be over everthing like they seem to be. Or how fortunate I have been...such a chancy thing. I am the worlds largest clutz...so I am always cutting, scraping, breaking - something. I am amazed I have not gotten anything like this yet.
0 Replies
 
BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:13 am
@dlowan,
OMG, dlowan, I had no idea you'd been thru such nastiness! I'm only on Round 3 of antibiotics.

Tomorrow the culture should tell us not only what it is, but if it is Staph this time, what kind it is (there are 30+ kinds of Staph). Crossing fingers that it's not MRSA.

Remaining as calm as possible, rejoicing I have no fever this time and no creepy red finger-things from the lesions.
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:36 am
@BorisKitten,
It is really good that you don't have the 'finger-things' this time.

I hope the culture results are good, and that the meds whack it into the ground for you.
0 Replies
 
BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:39 am
@sullyfish6,
Thanks for your reply, Sullyfish. Sure, Staph can and does live on books (think book covers) and surfaces, for up to 3 months.

Public library books are astonishingly filthy things. I wash my hands several times a day at the library, and each time they're so dirty I can actually see the dirt in the sink. Yick!

Staph is common, not only in public places but on our skin and in our noses.

Most people have no problem with it, until a break in the skin occurs... then the Staph can enter the bloodstream and cause illness.

I think I got this at the library because I worked all day that day, and only felt an itchy thing on my foot around 5 PM. Felt like a red ant bite or maybe a spider bite.

I foolishly took my shoe and sock off and scratched it. Bingo! Break in the skin; Staph in bloodstream.

BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:49 am
This is a Workers' Comp claim. So far they've paid me for Lost Wages (minor), initial visit to a Workers' Comp clinic (which had a really crappy Dr), and transportation.

I had a long conversation with my Claims Adjuster Tuesday; she's a nice person but seems a bit confused.

The initial claim was paid; now, however, the recurrence may or may not be paid. My initial claim was almost 2 months ago. At the time I thought I had a spider bite.

Since the very same lesions appear re-infected now, it's clear to me that this is the same infection. May not be so clear to them.

Last I heard, the Adjuster was going to ask for a review of my case from a nurse.

The problem is, I have no health insurance. Haven't had any for over 10 years.

Here in the US, one can easily be up ****'s Proverbial Creek without health insurance. Heck, you can get there even if you HAVE health insurance.

If this is MRSA and the Dr wants me to be hospitalized for IV Antibiotics, it would cause complete financial ruin for my husband and myself if Workers' Comp denies the claim.

And one has good reason to avoid hospitals anyway, given that MRSA is often caught there. Caregivers often do not wash their hands or even use antibacterial gel between patients: From what I've read this is mostly due to chronic under-staffing in hospitals.

If any of you should be so unlucky as to be hospitalized in the US, it would be worth your while to have a friend put a sign over your bed saying: "Did you wash your hands?" And if you can speak, ask any caregiver who approaches you. It could save your life.

Since I've not been hospitalized in over 30 years, this would be the Community-Acquired version of Staph. This is more and more common in schools, gyms, locker rooms, etc... any public place, really.
ossobuco
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:55 am
@BorisKitten,
I do hate having to worry about stuff like this.
Waiting to hear good results...
0 Replies
 
BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 09:57 am
@BorisKitten,
So let's mention the Dr at the Workers' Comp clinic. He had the bedside manner of a Stoat.

The real problem was, he put me on 10 days of high-dose Keflex, and that was it. I was running a fever at the time. I asked him how long the Keflex would take to work; he said 5 or 6 days.

I asked him whether I should cover the lesions: He said NO, the Keflex would rid me of them.

Had I followed his advice, my husband would have Staph as well right now.

My fever was so high (102) the next day, my husband took me to my regular Dr.

They gave me a Rocephin injection and good instructions as to what to do.

YES, cover the lesions, for goodness' sake!

AND bleach all your towels, sheets, clothing, anything that came into contact with your infected skin.

Bleach the bathroom, the floors, the counters: Everything. Throw out make-up; shower daily with antibacterial soap, bleach towels/washcloths after one use... well, etc.

It was a lot of work, and I did it all. I think I've used 6 containers of bleach in the past 2 months.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  2  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 10:25 am
@BorisKitten,
Can you access the worker's comp forms directly? will your family doc support this as a recurrence? don't wait for them to make a decision - push the claim forward - push push push

Does your jurisdiction have worker advocates? I find they can be very helpful.
BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 11:36 am
@ehBeth,
Now there's an idea! Yes, we DO have Worker Advocates, and I've just emailed them.

Will check the site (FL WC) again for forms I might be able to bring to the Dr myself tomorrow.

Thanks so much for having thought of this!
BorisKitten
 
  1  
Reply Thu 13 Aug, 2009 04:21 pm
@BorisKitten,
I was actually able to speak to a WC (Workers' Comp) Advocate today, to my great surprise. OMG, a govt. agency is working like it's supposed to!

He was very helpful. The Claims Company probably will NOT reimburse me for the medical bills incurred from my regular Dr.

However, they (WC) MUST pay me "Lost Time" for this incident, because my employer will not allow me to return to work.

Also, WC has 14 days to deny my claim, which has already passed. Any further days missed in the following 12 months must be paid, unless a Dr. states is writing that this illness it not related to the initial claim.

This illness, involving the very same lesions, is clearly related... thus my already-incurred Dr. visits will be covered by the lost time thingie.

I left a message with my adjuster (Claims Co) early today and didn't hear back from her, so it helped me a lot to talk to the Advocate.

I'll probably have to return to the initial (WC) clinic to see Dr. Stoat, which is fine with me.

I may have MRSA. As the Advocate pointed out, my injection of Rocephin is used for MRSA. Plus Bactrim, which I'm on right now, is second only to IV Vancomycin (sp?) in effectiveness against MRSA.

MRSA, folks, is NOT a death sentence (a commonly held belief in the US). Read all about it (I sure have) on the Internet.

With NO fever or spreading redness, it's unlikely that my bloodstream is infected.

 

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