Surgical Site Infections

  • Vanessa P. Ho
  • Soumitra R. Eachempati
  • Philip S. Barie


Infections of surgical incisions are a common complication of surgery, occurring in about 3 % of all surgical procedures and in up to 20 % of patients who undergo emergency intra-abdominal operations [1]. In 1992, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) changed the terminology from wound infection to surgical site infection (SSI) to differentiate infections of surgical incisions from infections of traumatic wounds [2]. Surgical site infections can cause substantial morbidity to patients by failure of incisions to heal, incisional hernias, fistulae, recurrent pain, and disfiguring scars; additionally, SSIs may bring about further infectious complications such as bacteremia. This morbidity also creates a substantial financial burden to hospitals and patients [3]. The development of SSIs is also used increasingly as a performance measure in recent government and insurance “pay for performance” initiatives, such that surgeons and hospitals with higher rates of SSI will be receiving lower reimbursements. For all of these reasons, surgeons must be aware of all measures to prevent and treat SSI effectively.


Surgical Site Infection Antibiotic Prophylaxis Clostridium Difficile Infection Necrotizing Fasciitis Surgical Site Infection Rate 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vanessa P. Ho
    • 1
  • Soumitra R. Eachempati
    • 1
  • Philip S. Barie
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of SurgeryNewYork-Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell Medical CenterNew YorkUSA

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