, Volume 44, Issue 6, pp 1018-1025
Date: 04 Jul 2013

Nasal MRSA screening for surgical patients: predictive value for postoperative infections caused by MRSA

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Postoperative methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) infections are occasionally fatal. We hypothesized that nasal MRSA screening might predict the risk of postoperative MRSA infections. The aim of the current study was to elucidate the relationship between the positivity of nasal MRSA screening and postoperative MRSA infections.


Six hundred and fourteen surgical patients who were admitted to the intensive care unit and underwent nasal MRSA screening between April 2006 and March 2011 were divided into MRSA-positive and -negative groups. The incidence of postoperative MRSA infections in the MRSA-positive and MRSA-negative groups were compared, and various risk factors for MRSA infections were evaluated.


The incidence of postoperative MRSA infections, such as pneumonia and enteritis, in the MRSA-positive group was significantly higher than that in the MRSA-negative group (41.9 vs. 3.1 %). The significant independent risk factors for postoperative MRSA infections were a positive MRSA screening, an operation lasting more than 300 min and an emergency operation. A positive MRSA screening was the most statistically significant risk factor for postoperative MRSA pneumonia and enteritis, but was not a risk factor for MRSA surgical site infections.


Nasal MRSA screening can help to identify patients who have an increased risk of developing postoperative MRSA infections, and would enable physicians to take a prompt action if these complications occur.