Prevalence of community-associated meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Panton–Valentine leucocidin-positive S. aureus in general practice patients with skin and soft tissue infections in the northern and southern regions of The Netherlands
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- Mithoe, D., Rijnders, M.I.A., Roede, B.M. et al. Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis (2012) 31: 349. doi:10.1007/s10096-011-1316-9
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The purpose of this investigation was to determine the prevalence of community-associated meticillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (CA-MRSA) and Panton–Valentine leucocidin (PVL)-positive S. aureus in general practice (GP) patients with skin and soft tissue infections (SSTI) in the northern (Groningen and Drenthe) and southern (Limburg) regions of The Netherlands. Secondary objectives were to assess the possible risk factors for patients with SSTI caused by S. aureus and PVL-positive S. aureus using a questionnaire-based survey. From 2007 to 2008, wound and nose cultures were obtained from patients with SSTI in general practice. These swabs were analysed for the presence of S. aureus and the antibiotic susceptibility was determined. The presence of the PVL toxin gene was determined by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and the genetic background with the use of spa typing. A survey was performed to detect risk factors for S. aureus infection and for the presence of PVL toxin.S. aureus was isolated from 219 out of 314 (70%) patients with SSTI, of which two (0.9%) patients were MRSA-positive. In 25 (11%) patients, the PVL toxin gene was found. A higher prevalence of PVL-positive S. aureus of patients with SSTI was found in the northern region compared to the south (p < 0.05). Regional differences were found in the spa types of PVL-positive S. aureus isolates, and for PVL-negative S. aureus isolates, the genetic background was similar in both regions. The prevalence of CA-MRSA in GP patients with SSTI in The Netherlands is low. Regional differences were found in the prevalence of PVL-positive S. aureus isolates from GP patients with SSTI. Household contacts having similar symptoms were found to be a risk factor for SSTI with S. aureus.