THURSDAY, June 10 (HealthDay News) -- Post-surgical
staphylococcus aureus infections occur most frequently among
patients who've had major chest or head operations, a new study
Commonly known as staph infections,
S.aureus is among the most common type of hospital-acquired
For this study, researchers analyzed 81,267 patients who
underwent 96,455 orthopedic, cardiothoracic (chest), plastic
surgery or neurosurgery (brain surgery) procedures at nine
community hospitals and two tertiary care hospitals between 2003
Out of these patients, 454 developed staph infections, including
317 surgical site infections and 188 bloodstream infections.
Fifty-one patients had both types of infections. The highest rates
of bloodstream infections occurred after operations on the chest,
and the highest rates of surgical site infections took place after
operations on the brain.
"The key message is that one prevention strategy does not fit all. There may be additional preventions needed for cardiovascular or neurosurgical procedures that are not necessary for plastic or orthopedic surgery," lead author Dr. Deverick Anderson, an infectious diseases specialist at Duke University Medical Center and the Duke Infection Control Outreach Network, said in a Duke news release.
Approaches that target only
methicillin-resistant S. aureus(MRSA) will likely fail to
prevent many infections, according to the researchers. "On average,
MRSA was present in only half of the infections that we
identified," Anderson said.
The findings appear online and in the July print issue of the
Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology.
The study was funded by Merck & Co., which was not involved
in the data analysis.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more
surgical site infection.