Can a pus-filled boil be a sign of something toxic circulating through your body? What about a simple infection as a urinary tract infection or Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS)? Can they take you to the grave? What about a lonely drive in the country? In some cases, yes, indeed.
- Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus). This bacteria causes various illnesses such as boils, cellulitis, pneumonia, blood poisoning and Toxic Shock Syndrome. Cellulitis, in this case, isn’t unsightly fat deposits on thighs; it is a non-contagious spreading bacterial infection of the skin and the tissues below it.
Symptoms of a staph infection typically start as a localized skin infection. It usually is a pustule with tenderness and redness around the swollen area. Staph-related illnesses range from mild, requiring no treatment, to death.
We now introduce MRSA, methicillin-resistant S. aureus. Methicillin and any other antibiotics in that class, including penicillin, are not effective against this particular staph strain. This, in medical parlance, is a “superbug.” MRSA is also known as a health care-associated infection (HAI) because so many cases have been associated with hospitals, nursing homes and other health-care facilities. In 2012, the number of MRSA cases topped 75,000.