Reduction Of Surgical Site Infection using a Novel Intervention

Surgical site infection is one of the most common postoperative complications, occurring in at least 5% of all patients undergoing surgery and 30-40% of patients undergoing abdominal surgery, depending on the level of contamination. Development of a surgical site infection has a large impact on mortality and morbidity as well as healthcare costs. In the United Kingdom, length of stay in hospital is typically doubled and additional costs per patient of between £814 and £10 523 (€950 ($1237) and €12 300 ($16 000)) have been estimated, the variability depending on the type of surgery and the severity of the infection. The ancillary costs from time off work, reduced health related quality of life, dissatisfaction in patients, and litigation costs for the healthcare provider have been explored less extensively, but the little evidence available confirms a detrimental effect.

We assessed the clinical effectiveness of wound edge protection devices in reducing rates of infection at the site of surgery in patients undergoing open abdominal surgery to evaluate the impact on patients’ health related quality of life and length of hospital stay.

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