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Major complications during negative pressure wound therapy in poststernotomy mediastinitis after cardiac surgery

By Rainer Petzina, Malin Malmsjö, Christof Stamm and Roland Hetzer

Abstract

Objective: Negative pressure wound therapy is the first-line treatment modality for poststernotomy mediastinitis in many heart centers. The aim of this study was to analyze major complications and possible preventive methods during negative pressure wound therapy in patients with deep sternal wound infections. Methods: We retrospectively analyzed 69 consecutive patients treated with negative pressure wound therapy for poststernotomy mediastinitis between June 2006 and September 2009. Results: Five (7.2%) patients sustained major complications during negative pressure wound therapy. Bleeding from coronary artery venous bypass grafts was observed in 4 patients and fulminant bleeding from an infected homograft of the ascending aorta was observed in 1 patient during routine dressing changes of the negative pressure wound therapy system. Conclusions: Bleeding is the major complication during negative pressure wound therapy for poststernotomy mediastinitis. Covering the heart with several layers of paraffin gauze is a necessary protective maneuver but cannot completely prevent major complications during negative pressure wound therapy. All operative procedures, including dressing changes, should be performed in the operating room under optimal hygienic and monitoring conditions to increase the salvage rate and to guarantee optimal surgical and anesthesiologic conditions in case of negative pressure wound therapy-related complications. (J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2010;140:1133-6

Topics: Other Clinical Medicine
Publisher: 'Elsevier BV'
Year: 2010
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.jtcvs.2010.06.063
OAI identifier: oai:lup.lub.lu.se:aa7c077e-66e6-47fd-aa44-2ef87458829a
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