A periodic survey of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) in Zurich in 2004 and 2006 revealed a consistently low prevalence of MRSA. SCCmec and ccr typing showed fluctuations in the proportions of SCCmec types and in the carriage of mobile virulence determinants. Together with the presence of variant SCCmecs these findings suggest a high clonal diversity and level of SCCmec recombination. The prevalence of a local "drug clone", associated with low-level methicillin resistance and rapid growth, significantly decreased. This clone had spread among intraveneous drug users, steadily increasing from 1994 to 2001 and was dominant in 2001. Apparently, changes in the management of the Zurich drug scene have restricted the spread of this clone.