[Clinical evaluation of vacuum sealing drainage for treatment of deep infection after hip or knee replacement]

Dongliang Xu, Qi Zhu, Peiheng He, Shiming Yu, Junyong Hu, Jianhua Liu, Fobao Li, Benqian Tan, Qiao Li
Chinese Journal of Reparative and Reconstructive Surgery 2011, 25 (11): 1319-22

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the method and effectiveness of vacuum sealing drainage (VSD) combined with debridement for treatment of deep infection after hip or knee replacement.

METHODS: Between September 2006 and May 2010, 13 cases of deep infection after joint replacement surgery were treated, including 5 males and 8 females with an average age of 62.5 years (range, 56-78 years). Infection occurred at 7 days to 1 year and 2 months (median, 14 days) after joint replacement surgery. The time from infection to admission was 8 days to 4 years and 6 months (median, 21 days). Purulent secretion with or without blood were observed in all patients; sinus formed in 5 cases; and unhealing of incision or drainage opening disunion were observed in 8 cases. The size of skin defect at secretion drainage or sinus opening site was 5 mm x 3 mm to 36 mm x 6 mm; the depth of drainage tunnel or sinus was 21-60 mm. The histopathological examination in 11 patients showed acute infection or chronic infection with acute onset in 10 cases, and tuberculosis in 1 case. In 6 cases of secretion culture, Staphylococcus aureus was isolated from 5 cases. After thorough debridement, wound irrigation was performed during the day and VSD during the night in 10 cases. VSD was merely performed in 3 cases.

RESULTS: In 1 case after revision total hip arthroplasty, the wound bled profusely with VSD, then VSD stopped and associated with compression bandage, VSD proceeded again 3 days later with no heavy bleeding. All the patient were followed up 1 year to 4 years and 5 months (mean, 2 years and 11 months). Infection were controlled 7-75 days (mean, 43 days) after VSD in 10 cases. In these cases, prosthesis were reserved, no recurrent infection was observed, wound were healed, limb function were reserved. VSD was refused in 1 case because of hypersensitive of the pain at the vacuum site, infection control was failed and amputation at the thigh was proceeded. The effect was not evident in 1 case with tuberculosis infection, then the prosthesis was removed and arthrodesis was proceeded followed by complete union. In 1 case, infection was cured with VSD, recurrent infection happened after 9 months, antibiotic-impregnated cement spacer was used at end, and no recurrence was observed 1 year and 4 months later.

CONCLUSION: VSD combined with debridement can drainage deep infection sufficiently, promote wound healing, reduce recurrent infection rate, maximize the possibility of prosthesis preservation.


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