Identification and management of the patient at high risk for wound infection

G D Becker
Head & Neck Surgery 1986, 8 (3): 205-10
Despite the use of perioperative antibiotics, wound infection remains a major source of morbidity after contaminated head and neck cancer surgery. Most adjunctive methods designed to control wound infection include techniques to reduce bacterial wound contamination. Additional methods include predicting the high risk patient and the bacteriology of subsequent wound infection, which allows antibiotic prophylaxis to be used on a selective basis. This article reviews relevant experimental and clinical data that evaluated these methods. Based on these results, as well as personal observations, guidelines are suggested for controlling wound infection in patients undergoing contaminated head and neck surgery.

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