Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


Environmental and Occupational Health

First Committee Member

Linda Stetzenbach, Chair

Second Committee Member

Chad Cross

Third Committee Member

Sheniz Moonie

Fourth Committee Member

Sally Miller

Graduate Faculty Representative

Mark Buttner

Number of Pages



Staphylococcus aureus is a frequent cause of a myriad of infections in hospitals, healthcare facilities and community settings. It is often related to skin and soft tissue infection, but it can also cause other diseases varying from food poisoning to endocarditis and toxic shock syndrome. According to a study by Kuehnert et al. (2006) there has been a strong association between Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) carriage and risk factors for subsequent infections. Subsequent infection from S. aureus , including methicillin-resistant S. aureus (MRSA) infection, can be projected by looking at the presence of S. aureus nasal colonization. The purpose of this study was to determine the prevalence of MRSA among adult patients and assess the antimicrobial susceptibility pattern of isolated samples. Specimens were collected from a Las Vegas county hospital during a four-month period from September 2008 through December 2008. Patient demographics and nasal swabs were collected upon admission from screened patients regarded to be at high risk for MRSA colonization. Antimicrobial-susceptibility testing and strain typing were performed. A total of 100 MRSA samples were processed for this study. Among the MRSA positive samples studied, the average patient age was 58 years, predominantly in Whites (64%) and mostly in male (69%). All isolates showed susceptibility to quinipristin/dalfopristin and vancomycin, 99% to rifampin, 96% to linezolid, and 83% to tetracycline and trimetoprim-sulfamethoxazole. Predominant strain types were USA100 USA300, Brazilian and Iberian. Increased assessment of the population dynamics of MRSA colonization can assist in determining the extent of MRSA prevalence, aid appropriate treatment, identify interventions, and prevent transmission in the population.


Epidemiology; Infection--Control; Medical microbiology; Public health; Staphylococcus aureus


Bacterial Infections and Mycoses | Epidemiology | Microbiology | Public Health

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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