Predictors for outcome after vacuum assisted closure therapy of peri-vascular surgical site infections in the groin

S Svensson, C Monsen, T Kölbel, S Acosta
European Journal of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery 2008, 36 (1): 84-9

OBJECTIVES: To assess outcomes (wound healing, amputation and mortality) after vacuum assisted closure (VAC) therapy of peri-vascular surgical site infections in the groin after arterial surgery.

DESIGN: Retrospective study.

MATERIALS: Thirty-three groins received VAC therapy between August 2004 and December 2006 at Vascular Centre, Malmö University Hospital.

METHODS: Following surgical revision, VAC therapy was applied in the groin at a continuous topical negative pressure of 125 mmHg. The median follow up time was 16 months.

RESULTS: Median age was 75 years. Twenty-three (70%) cases underwent surgery for lower limb ischaemia. Intestinal flora was present in 88% of the wound cultures. Median duration of VAC therapy was 20 days and 27 (82%) wounds healed within 55 days. One serious VAC associated bleeding and three late false femoral artery aneurysms were reported. The median cost of VAC treatment was 2.7% of the in-hospital costs. Synthetic vascular graft infection (n=21) was associated with adverse infection-related events (n=9; p=0.012). Non-healing wounds were associated with amputation (p=0.005) and death (p<0.001).

CONCLUSIONS: VAC treated synthetic vascular graft infections in the groin were at a greater risk of developing infection-related complications. Non-healing surgical site infections after VAC therapy were associated with amputation and death.

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