Influence of a 5-year serial infection control and antibiotic stewardship intervention on cardiac surgical site infections

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Surgical site infections (SSIs) complicate surgery, resulting in higher morbidity and mortality. Infection control bundles and antibiotic stewardship can be effective at reducing SSIs. The influence of long-term serial interventions is unclear.


The goal of this retrospective quasiexperimental study was to assess the influence of a 5-year serial infection control and antibiotic stewardship intervention on SSIs.


The multidisciplinary program actively implemented pre-, intra-, and postoperative strategies over a 5-year period from 2009-2014 for all patients undergoing coronary artery bypass graft (CABG), valve replacement, or both at a tertiary care public institution. Outcomes are compared with a 2-year preinterventions period (2007-2009) and 1-year postinterventions period (2014-2015).


A total of 6,518 procedures were included. After interventions, the overall combined infection rate for CABG, CABG and valve, and valve procedures decreased by 66.3%, from 11.9%-4.0% (odds ratio, 0.34; 95% confidence interval, 0.23-0.49; P < .001). A significant decrease of >50% (P < .001) relative rate was observed in overall, sternum, leg, CABG, and combined CABG and valve infection rates when comparing pre- and postinterventions groups. The antibiotic stewardship intervention increased overall conformity to the internal surgical prophylaxis protocol by 46.8%, from 39.8%-86.6% (95% confidence interval, 41.0-52.4; P < .001).


Long-term, serial comprehensive infection control and antibiotic stewardship interventions decrease overall SSIs in patients undergoing CABG and valve replacement procedures.

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