Surgical site infections after abdominal closure in colorectal surgery using triclosan-coated absorbable suture (PDS Plus) vs. Uncoated sutures (PDS II): A randomized multicenter study

Jozsef Baracs, Orsolya Huszár, Shahram Ghotb Sajjadi, O. Peter Horváth

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Background: Surgical site infections (SSI) are the third most common hospital-acquired infections and account for 14% to 16% of all such infections. In elective colorectal operations, the international SSI rate ranges from 4.7%-25%. In a previous retrospective study in this department, the SSI rate was unacceptably high (25%), and the promising different international evaluations of triclosan-coated suture materials encouraged us to create a multicenter randomized trial to improve our results. The main goal of this study was to compare triclosan-coated and uncoated absorbable suture (PDS Plus ® with PDS II ®) in elective colorectal operations. Methods: This was an internet-based study involving seven surgical centers. All the elective colorectal operations were performed by experienced surgeons. For abdominal fascia closure, running looped PDS was applied; triclosan-coated or uncoated PDS was chosen by computer randomization. Pre-operative and peri-operative variables such as gender, body mass index, neoadjuvant therapy, type II diabetes mellitus, amount of wound dressing material used, nursing days, and microbiological results were recorded. After the operation, the patient's data and risk factors were collected in a password-protected online database. Results: From 485 patients randomized, SSI was documented in 47 patients (12.5%), 23 (12.2%) in the group having triclosan-coated sutures (n=188) and 24 (12.2%) in the uncoated suture group (n=197), a non-significant difference. Of all SSIs, 13 (27.7%) were diagnosed only after discharge, being recognized in the outpatient setting, with four patients in the triclosan suture group (8.5%) and nine in the uncoated suture group (19.2%) being affected with no significant differences in the demographic data. Microbiological examinations, in addition to the same colon flora in both groups, revealed two gram-positive infections in the uncoated suture group. The hospital stay and costs of dressings were significantly higher in patients having SSIs. Conclusion: Compared with the previous retrospective studies of this department, the implementation of looped PDS decreased the incidence of SSI by one-half, whether the suture was triclosan-coated or not. It seems that patient factors are less important than operative factors in the occurrence of SSI, and there were no differences between elective colon and rectal operations in the development of incisional infections. No beneficial effect of triclosan against gram-positive bacteria, which has been reported in the literature, could be confirmed in our study. We could not show an effect against gram-negative enteric microorganisms. Higher additional costs and longer hospital stay with SSI were confirmed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)483-489
Number of pages7
JournalSurgical Infections
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases

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