JOURNAL ARTICLE
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Prophylactic antibiotic use in clean, uncontaminated neck dissection.

Laryngoscope 1995 March
A recent report in the literature cites a 10% wound infection rate for clean, uncontaminated neck dissections in patients who did not receive antibiotic prophylaxis as compared with a 3.3% infection rate in patients who received prophylactic antibiotics. Although a trend favoring antibiotic prophylaxis was identified, the duration of therapy was not considered. The present analysis addresses this issue. The authors retrospectively reviewed the records of 120 patients who underwent clean, uncontaminated neck dissections over a 3-year period (July 1989 through May 1992) for variables related to wound infections. Radiation therapy had previously been used in 70% of these patients. Group 1 (31 patients) received 24 hours of perioperative antibiotic prophylaxis, and group 2 (89 patients) received antibiotic prophylaxis until the suction drains were removed (usually 4 or 5 days after surgery). No perioperative wound infections occurred in either group. The authors concluded that perioperative antibiotic prophylaxis for 24 hours is sufficient to prevent wound infections in clean, uncontaminated neck dissections.

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