MRSA Bloodstream Infections


Bloodstream infections occur when the blood itself is infected with bacteria.


  • High fevers are common.
  • Patients usually appear quite ill.
  • Patients often shake uncontrollably; this is termed rigors. Rigors occur when fevers spike, and are often found in association with bacteria entering the bloodstream.
  • Other symptoms may include weakness, body aches and fatigue.


The diagnosis is based on a positive blood culture, i.e. bacteria are found in the blood. Blood is sent to the lab fortesting. Success enables you to know the exact bacteria causing the infection, and which antibiotics will best treat the infection.  

Source of Infection

Bacteria found in the bloodstream usually originate from an infection located elsewhere in the body; this is called the source. Bacteria seep from the source into the bloodstream. Identification of the source is important, because it will help dictate specific treatment, and length of treatment. The source for bloodstream infections can be any of the above previously described invasive infections, including:

  • MRSA Cellulitis
  • MRSA Pneumonia
  • MRSA Kidney infection (Pyelonephritis)
  • MRSA Joint infection
  • MRSA Bone infection (Osteomyelitis)
  • MRSA Heart infection (Endocarditis)