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Healthcare professionals can emphasize prevention measures.

Be Aware of Potential for Skin Infections in Student Athletes

By Shelly Morrow Mark, Executive Editor, AHC Media

While summer is often a time for pre-season sports practices for student athletes, it also may be a time of increased risk for skin infections. A recent study found that acquiring colonization with Staphylococcus aureus was highest among college athletes in the summer months. The August issue of Infectious Disease Alert reviews recent studies about skin infections in student athletes. In the article, Dr. Philip Fischer of the Mayo Clinic discusses the recent findings about potential skin infections among student athletes and the importance of awareness and prevention. “Summer is not necessarily ‘off season’ for skin infections in athletes,” says Dr. Fischer. High school and college wrestlers and football players are at particular risk of skin infections that limit sports participation, he says.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers advice for coaches and team healthcare providers on preventing infections. Some of the advice includes educating athletes about how to prevent infection spread, keeping wounds covered, showering after sports participation, and making sure proper supplies such as soap and bandages are available.

Be sure to look see the August issue of Infectious Disease Alert to find out more and to read about other recent studies in the infectious disease field.