Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"I am an optician and was just diagnosed with MRSA. Can I still do my job?"
I fit contact lenses and come into contact with people
I recommend discussing your concern with your primary care doctor. MRSA is a type of staph bacteria. it stands for methicillin-resistant staph aureus. Staph aureus is a bacteria that lives on our skin and therefore can infect small cuts and openings in the skin. It is known for causing abscesses and other difficult to treat skin infections. There are many people that have been exposed to MRSA and have it living on their skin. However, this usually is never diagnosed unless they develop an infection and that infection is cultured and the bacteria is discovered. Certainly if you have an active infection, this area should not come into contact with other people if possible. This is especially true if you work with patients and are touching people regularly. However, if you are diagnosed with this type of infection at one time and it has now passed it is unlikely that you need to worry about passing it along to somebody else. Of course you should never come into contact with another person's cut or open skin wound. I would suggest that you schedule an appointment with your primary care physician to discuss this further. If you have an active infection with MRSA, it should be treated with an antibiotic such as Bactrim or doxycycline. Remember to wash your hands frequently especially around patients. Good luck.
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