Community-onset methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in an urban HIV clinic

Daniel J. Skiest, K. Brown, J. Hester, T. Moore, C. Crosby, H. R. Mussa, H. Hoffman-Roberts, T. Cooper

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Scopus citations


Objectives: To determine the proportion of skin/soft tissue infections (SSTIs) and to determine risks for MRSA infection caused by methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in HIV-infected out-patients. Methods: We conducted a prospective study of SSTIs in HIV-infected out-patients. A questionnaire was used to record MRSA risk factors and treatment. In vitro testing for antibiotic susceptibility, inducible clindamycin resistance, panton-valentine leucocidin (PVL) toxin, and the staphylococcal chromosomal cassette mec (SCCmec) type was performed using standardized methods. Treatment outcomes included resolution of primary site of infection, nonresolution of infection and reinfection and were confirmed at clinic visit and/or telephone follow-up. Results: Forty-one of 44 patients had an SSTI caused by MRSA. African-Americans comprised 21 of 41 MRSA patients. The median CD4 count of MRSA patients was 411 cells/μL. Four patients required hospitalization and three patients had secondary bacteraemia. Twenty-one of 41 MRSA patients had healthcare-associated (HCA) MRSA risk factors including a history of prior MRSA infection (n = 9) and hospitalization within 6 months (n = 11). Other prevalent MRSA risk factors included receipt of systemic antibiotics within 6 months (n = 21) and previous incarceration (n = 19). Twenty-two patients had a significant non-HIV-related comorbid illness. The majority of isolates were susceptible to trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole, tetracycline, and clindamycin. Inducible clindamycin resistance was detected in 0 of 16 erythromycin-resistant, clindamycin-susceptible MRSA isolates. Twenty-one of 24 isolates tested positive for SCCmec type IV. Twenty-four of 24 isolates tested positive for the PVL gene. Antibiotic treatment was discordant (bacteria nonsusceptible to antibiotic used) in eight MRSA patients. The primary SSTI resolved in 37 of 40 MRSA patients. Recurrence of infection at a site other than the primary site was relatively common (11 patients). Conclusions: We found a high rate of MRSA causing SSTI in community-dwelling patients. The majority of isolates were positive for PVL and SCCmec IV, which is typical of community-associated MRSA isolates causing SSTIs in the general population. Inducible clindamycin resistance was not detected. Most patients had MRSA risk factors. The initial site of infection resolved in most cases but subsequent MRSA infection was relatively common.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)361-368
Number of pages8
JournalHIV Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 1 2006


  • AIDS
  • Community-acquired MRSA
  • HIV
  • MRSA
  • Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
  • Panton-valentine leucocidin
  • Skin and soft tissue infections

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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