Khloe Kardashian Reportedly Contracts Staph Infection: What Is It?

(Photo: Getty Images)

Khloe Kardashian has acquired a staph infection on her leg, TMZ reports.

While Kardashian has not confirmed this publicly on her Twitter account, she did tweet late last night that she was on antibiotics:

TMZ reports that Kardashian, 31, acquired the infection from the hospital where she was visiting Lamar Odom, and that she has a painful lesion on her leg.

Staph infections are most commonly caused by Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, and most commonly manifest as skin infections that are red, swollen, have pimples/boils, and can lead to impetigo (where the skin develops blisters and can become crusty), according to Medline Plus.

Cellulitis can also occur — when the deeper layers of the skin become infected, leading to ulcers and oozing discharge — as well as Staphylococcal scalded skin syndrome — which usually affects kids and newborns, and is when the breaking of blisters causes the top layer of the skin to become raw and burn-like, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Even though skin infections are the most common kind of staph infections, staph can also cause pneumonia, food poisoning, blood poisoning, and toxic shock syndrome, Medline Plus reports. Staph infection that leads to skin infection most often occurs when you have a cut or scratch and then that becomes infected with staph bacteria.

Infections are often treated with antibiotics or draining the pus and other liquids from the infection site. However, a lot of staph bacteria are resistant to antibiotics today (such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus auerus), with only about 10 percent of staph infections being able to be cured with penicillin, the Mayo Clinic reports.

The best way to prevent staph infection is to make sure to keep your hands clean by washing with soap and water, and keeping any open wounds clean and covered with a bandage, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says. Also, avoid sharing items like towels and razors, which can spread the bacteria.

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