Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) may colonize and cause significant disease in neonates in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs).1-4 Because these infants are at high risk for rehospitalization in the first year of life,5,6 the course of MRSA colonization in NICU graduates is an important health issue. We prospectively followed up 15 NICU graduates with MRSA colonization and their families to determine the spontaneous clearance of nasal MRSA colonization after hospital discharge.
Methods. After an infant in the NICU at Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas, Tex, was found to have MRSA bacteremia, all patients in the NICU from August 1, 1990, through March 31, 1991, were screened with weekly nasopharyngeal and umbilical cultures for MRSA.
With hospital review board approval and informed parental consent, NICU graduates with MRSA colonization (from any site) and their immediate family members had an initial screening nasal culture in the first 6 months after hospital discharge.