February 1982

Single-Dose Intraoperative Antibiotic Prophylaxis in Emergency Abdominal Surgery

Author Affiliations

From the University Surgical Unit, Northern General Hospital, Sheffield, England. Dr Rowlands is now with the University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston.

Arch Surg. 1982;117(2):195-199. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1982.01380260063011

• In a randomized controlled trial of the use of a single intravenous dose of gentamicin sulfate and clindamycin phosphate used intraoperatively during emergency abdominal surgery, the overall incidence of postoperative wound infection was reduced from 32.3% to 10.4%. Significant reduction in wound infection occurred in the study group compared with control subjects, irrespective of the underlying pathologic lesion. No side effects of the use of antibiotics were noted. The policy of antibiotic prophylaxis in emergency surgery seems to be of particular benefit in elderly patients.

(Arch Surg 1982;117:195-199)