Four hundred fifty students were screened for nasal SA carriage during the fall of 2000, 2001, and 2002.
Of 450 volunteers, 131 (29%) were SA carriers. Antibiotic resistance was high for azithromycin (26%) and low for ciprofloxacin (1%), tetracycline (5%), mupirocin (1%), and methicillin (2%). PFGE patterns were not associated with carriage. Age, male gender, white race, medical student, allergen injection therapy, chronic sinusitis, rheumatoid arthritis, hospitalization for 6 months or less, and use of antibiotics were associated with carrier status by univariate analysis. Stepwise multivariate logistic regression led to a best fitting model with older age (OR, 1.04; CI95, 1.005-1.079), male gender (OR, 1.50; CI95, 0.982-2.296), and chronic sinusitis (OR, 2.71; CI95, 0.897-8.195) as risk factors. Antibiotic use (< 4 weeks) (OR, 0.41; CI95, 0.152-1.095) and allergen injection therapy (OR 0.41; CI95, 0.133-1.238) were protective. Analyses of carriers revealed candidate factors for persistent carriage to be nasal SA colonization rate and male gender. Factors for azithromycin resistance were non-medical students and antibiotic use in the past 6 months.