Surgical site infections in neonates are independently associated with longer hospitalizations

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

There is limited data characterizing the risk and impact of surgical site infection (SSI) in neonates; this makes it difficult to identify factors that increase neonatal SSI risk and to determine how SSI affects outcomes in this special population.

STUDY DESIGN:

The American College of Surgeons National Surgical Improvement Program Pediatric (NSQIP-P) collected data on children undergoing surgery at children's hospitals from 2012 to 2014. Neonates undergoing general surgical procedures were characterized with regard to demographic characteristics and comorbidities. Perioperative variables such as wound class, type of surgery and length of operation were also evaluated.

RESULTS:

Seven thousand three hundred and seventy-nine neonates were identified in the NSQIP-P participant user file. The overall SSI rate was 2.6%. Only wound class and length of surgery were significantly associated with SSI. Furthermore, SSI was independently associated with longer length of stay, even after adjusting for covariates.

CONCLUSIONS:

This is the largest study to date analyzing SSI in neonates. We found that perioperative variables have a more significant impact on SSI than patient factors, suggesting that operation-related characteristics are influencing SSI. Furthermore, neonates with SSI are more likely to have prolonged hospitalizations even after adjusting for patient comorbidities.

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