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Officials React to Bacterial Infection Outbreak at Texas High School

EMSL Analytical, Inc. offers environmental surface testing services to identify microbial pathogens and to confirm disinfection procedures are effective.

Dallas, TX – WEBWIRE
EMSL Analytical, Inc. Laboratory Locations
EMSL Analytical, Inc. Laboratory Locations

In September, the Mineral Wells Index published several stories about athletes from a local high school who developed contagious skin infections. The culprit, impetigo, is easily spread and is typically caused by Staphylococcus aureusStreptococcus pyogenes or Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

According to the articles, the school district responded by issuing a public notice as well as hiring a company to disinfect the athletic department and its equipment. These disinfection procedures are crucial for stopping the spread of this infection since impetigo commonly occurs when bacteria enter the skin through cuts, scraps or insect bites. It is spread through contact with sores or mucus from the nose or throat of an infected person and is very contagious.

When a person becomes infected, lesions will often appear 1-3 days later as red sores or blisters where the bacteria have entered the skin. The condition is fairly common in preschool and school-age children in addition to anywhere there are crowded environments and participation in skin-to-skin contact activities.

“Fortunately, impetigo is usually easily treated with antibiotics, however, if caused by MRSA, treatment options and the potential severity of the infection can change dramatically,” said Jason Dobranic, Ph.D., Vice President of Microbiology and Life Sciences at EMSL Analytical, Inc. “Because so many pathogens can be spread by contact with contaminated surfaces, when an outbreak occurs, it’s vital that surfaces are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.”

Environmental testing to pinpoint the source of an outbreak due to surface pathogens or to confirm the effectiveness of disinfection procedures plays an important role in preventing and stopping these types of outbreaks. To help in these efforts, EMSL offers comprehensive environmental surface testing for microorganisms and all of the sampling supplies necessary to submit samples. They have also sponsored an educational video about impetigo that can be seen at: 

To learn more about environmental testing for microbial pathogens or other occupational, health and safety services, please visit, call (800) 220-3675 or email

About EMSL Analytical, Inc.

EMSL Analytical, Inc. is a nationally recognized and locally focused provider of environmental, indoor air quality and materials testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The company has an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies. 

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