Saturday, January 26, 2008

Union-Tribune: Straight Teen Male
Dies of 'Super Bug' Staph Infection

My thoughts and prayers go out to the Carbaugh family as they cope with the loss of their beloved Brian, who recently died from a drug resistant staph infection.
The death of this presumably straight boy from this disease illustrates how wrong it was of UCSF's press office to promote the dangerous idea that MRSA is primarily afflicting the gay community in San Francisco and other cities with large gay populations, and not in the so-called "general population."
After two weeks of gay staph infection media hysteria, induced largely through the lead UCSF staph study researcher Dr. Binh Diep continually telling the press that MRSA rates are high for homosexuals and could rapidly spread to the general population, I've determined that are two reason to be upset with Diep's remarks.
Yes, he was an idiot to isolate gays from the larger local community, but as troubling was his promoting the misperception that MRSA is not already widespread in the "general population." It is, Dr. Diep. This tragic story today from San Diego is just a single example from a Google news search for "staph" or "MRSA" of how prevalent the problem really is for heterosexuals.
The death of Brian Carbaugh shows how MRSA respects no sexual orientation identity or STD transmission routes or age of the patient or geographic location, and reminds us all how reprehensible it was of UCSF media relations officers to zero in on gays, instead of stressing how we are all at-risk for staph infections.
ENCINITAS – Last Christmas, Brian Carbaugh's brother visited the UCSD Burn Center to drop off toys for children being treated there.
It was a tradition that Brian, 13, started years ago, after he had severely burned his feet in a fire pit as a toddler. The Encinitas boy had been treated at the center, enduring unimaginable pain with a cheerful face and unyielding bravery, nurse Maury Scott said.

Brian couldn't make his annual Christmas delivery because he was back in the hospital – the victim of a vicious bacterial infection that on Jan. 19 took his life.

Scott said he and other nurses were aware that Brian had been ill, but “we didn't know it would develop into this.” [...]

Officials with the San Dieguito Union School District said Brian may have contracted the bacterial infection, known as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, at a wrestling class at the Boys & Girls Club of San Dieguito. [...]

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I appreciate your perspective, and I agree with everything you say. But out of respect to the Carbaugh family, can you please refrain from politicizing Brian's death? He was a sweet, beautiful chld -- a friend of my son's -- and I can assure you that regardless of your pure intentions, the family would not appreciate any discussion or speculation about his sexuality. After all, he was just a kid -- a kid whose life was cut short before he could even learn what sexuality is.