Microbiology and antibiotic prophylaxis in rhinoplasty: a review of 363 consecutive cases

Donald B Yoo, Grace Lee Peng, Babak Azizzadeh, Paul S Nassif
JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery 2015, 17 (1): 23-7

IMPORTANCE: A practical technique for reducing infectious complications from rhinoplasty would represent an important surgical advance.

OBJECTIVES: To describe the microbial flora of patients undergoing septorhinoplasty and to evaluate the role of preoperative and postoperative antibiotic prophylaxis.

DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS: We performed a retrospective medical record review of 363 consecutive adult patients who underwent preoperative nasal swab testing and rhinoplasty or septorhinoplasty in a single private practice: 279 women (76.9%) and 84 men (23.1%). The average patient age was 35.9 years (age range, 17-70 years).

MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES: Identification of endogenous nasal flora and pathogenic bacteria treated with culture-directed antibiotics; evaluation of comorbidities, perioperative infections, and antibiotic treatments.

RESULTS: A total of 174 patients (47.9%) underwent primary rhinoplasty, and 189 (52%) underwent revision rhinoplasty. On preoperative nasal culture, 78.2% of patients had normal flora; 10.7% had Staphylococcus aureus; and 0.28% had methicillin-resistant S aureus (MRSA). In 7.4% of patients, fecal coliforms including Escherichia coli, Enterobacter species, and Citrobacter species were found. Age, sex, smoking, the use of oral contraceptives, or the presence of seasonal allergies did not significantly change the nasal flora or the postoperative infection rate. Patients with adult acne were found to have an increased incidence of colonization with fecal coliforms (43.8%; P < .001). Patients with diabetes were found to have an increased incidence of colonization with S aureus (66.7%; P = .002). The overall infection rate was 3.0% (11 of 363 patients), with 4.0% (7 of 174 patients) seen in primary septorhinoplasties and 2.1% (4 of 189 patients) seen in revision cases. Coliforms accounted for 5 cases (45.5%) of postoperative infections, while S aureus was responsible for 4 cases (36.4%), including 1 case of MRSA.

CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: The results of this study suggest that risk factors alone may not reliably predict the subset of patients in whom antibiotic prophylaxis is indicated. Knowledge of the endogenous nasal flora and the microbiology of common pathogens in patients undergoing septorhinoplasty will help to further reduce the incidence of infectious complications.


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