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WHO Offers New Guidelines on Reducing Risk for Surgical Site Infections and Antibiotic Resistance — Physician’s First Watch
WHO Offers New Guidelines on Reducing Risk for Surgical Site Infections and Antibiotic Resistance
By Kelly Young
Patients undergoing surgery should always bathe or shower beforehand, but the surgical site should not be shaved, according to new guidelines from the World Health Organization designed to combat surgical site infections and reduce the risk for antibiotic resistance. The group notes that shaving can cause microscopic tears in the skin and thus increase risk for infection.
Some of the other recommendations include:
Prophylactic antibiotics should not be used after surgery, only before and during surgery.
Protocols should be followed for intensive perioperative blood glucose control for both patients with and without diabetes who are undergoing surgery.
Prophylactic negative-pressure wound therapy should be considered for primarily closed surgical incisions in high-risk wounds (e.g., poor tissue perfusion due to surrounding soft tissue or skin damage).
For all surgeries, the WHO panel suggests using triclosan-coated sutures.