Handbag Diseases - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

11/22/06

Handbag Diseases

Several people have sent me the same alarming e-mail about all the diseases we could be carrying on the bottom of our purses.

It turns out there's nothing crazy about that. Instead, this e-mail is kind of a wake-up call that we set our purses down in some ugly places and then later, prop them on the kitchen counter for convenience. Ever thought about what you could be bringing into your kitchen?

Pathologists at Baylor Medical Center checked it out and confirmed several disgusting discoveries. They found staphylococcus aureus , which can cause skin infections. They also found the bacteria blamed for food poisoning and toxic shock syndrome and, on two of the purses, they found the deadly bacteria E-coli.

"I don't think you would come home and put your shoes on your kitchen counter. So I think you have to use some common sense," said Benton Middleman, MD, a pathologist.

So, how do you make sure your purse is as clean as possible? Of course you can wipe it inside and out with anti-bacterial wipes, but be sure to always use those hooks in bathroom stalls. In restaurants, try to hang your purse on the back of a chair or just put it in your lap.

Most importantly, Dr. Middleman says never set your purse on the kitchen counter or near where food is served.

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