You may be asking – how long before I get ill? What is the MRSA incubation period? It could be minutes or it could be decades.
1-2% of the population are thought to be MRSA carriers – with much larger percentages in some high risk groups. Only a small percentage of those have active MRSA infections. MRSA is usually an infection that preys on other wounds. If you become a carrier because of contact with another carrier it does not mean that you will develop an infection. It just places you at a higher risk if you do as there are some drugs that MRSA resists. So – your mrsa incubation period could be months or years or even decades. MRSA often waits until you have a wound, nick or cut which it can compromise. You can be healthy and feeling no ill effects for a long time – and you can stop being a carrier in many circumstances.
Sometimes MRSA only lives on us for a while. It may become dislodged by our hygiene habits or be held in check or driven away by other bacteria that may be easier to treat anyway. One of these is staphylococcus epidermis. Some studies suggest that up to 80% of the population may carry staphylococcus aureus (the SA part of MRSA) at some point in their lives. So your MRSA carrier status may change at any time
Because MRSA might live quietly on your skin or in your nose you may become a ‘silent carrier’. You might not be ill but others you pass it onto may have other health problems that make them more prone to having an active epidemic. This is particularly true of high risk groups such as prison inmates, medical staff, military people, sexually active males and females and those involved in high contact sports.
The PVL strains – shorter MRSA incubation period
Some MRSA strains do carry a mutation that is known as PVL (the initials of the men who discovered it.) These strains may more aggressively create pores in your skin which become the foundation of skin infections. This is more common in the community strains which infect those with little or no hospital contact. The only way to know however is to have an MRSA test. The MRSA incubation period on these strains may be days or weeks instead of months and years.
Other articles that you might find helpful
- How do you catch MRSA – 5 key facts
- MRSA precautions for your home
- Is MRSA airborne? 3 key facts
- MRSA skin infections – 3 key sources
- Living with someone who has MRSA – 7 key facts
- Chronic MRSA Infections – Why Does MRSA Recur?
- MRSA Sexually Transmitted – Kissing, saliva and skin transfer?
- Exposure to MRSA in Everyday Life
- Is MRSA just a hospital infection?
- MRSA incubation period – How long is it ?