#3: Staph Infections Pervasive in Professional Sports
Given the exertion on the body and release of bodily fluids present when competing in professional sports, it is no wonder that Staphylococcus aureus
(staph) infections can run rampant among players. One recent example is that of “Ultimate Fighter” James Krause, who, as a result of cut on his leg, suffered a staph infection that required nearly two weeks in the hospital and three surgeries to clean out. Fellow mixed martial arts (MMA) fighters Kenny Florian and Jason Miller have also suffered severe staph infection and indeed, participants on the television show “The Ultimate Fighter” have suffered several “undisclosed” staph infections.
Staph infections are not only rampant in the world of MMA. Professional football players, such as Tom Brady and Peyton Manning have both contracted staph infections.
“Gymnasiums, locker rooms, and other high-traffic areas where large volumes of bodily fluids like sweat and blood may be left behind by numerous people are prime growing grounds for S. aureus. Bacteria may spread via direct contact with an infected individual, through the use of contaminated objects like free weights, or by otherwise bringing infected fluids from the carrier into the body.” In fact, Jeanine Thomas, founder and president of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus
(MRSA) Survivors Network told Contagion
®, “Staph is the cockroach of bacteria. We keep throwing antibiotics and treatments at it, and it just keeps finding a way to spread and survive.” And, infected individuals can spread the infection without even knowing they themselves are infected.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention site locker rooms and gymnasiums as notorious breeding grounds for staph infections and it is for this reason that good personal hygiene, hand washing, and equipment and environmental cleaning actions are strongly encouraged.
More on staph infections in professional sports is available here