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July 1965

Infections and Retina Surgery: I. Bacteriologic Contamination During Scleral Buckling Surgery

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Clinical Eye Research, Institute of Biological and Medical Sciences, Retina Foundation; and the Department of Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary. Research Associate, Retina Foundation, Boston; Assistant in Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary; Assistant in Ophthalmology, Harvard Medical School (Dr. McMeel). Research Fellow, Retina Foundation, Fellow in Ophthalmology, Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, July 1961-July 1962 (Dr. Wapner).

Arch Ophthalmol. 1965;74(1):42-44. doi:10.1001/archopht.1965.00970040044010

Postoperative infection remains a potentially serious complication in retinal detachment procedures as in all types of surgery. Proper scrubbing, masking, and gowning of personnel, sterilization of instruments and materials, and sterile draping of the area surrounding the operative site have all minimized the chances of contamination when adequate sterile technique is observed. A recognized but frequently overlooked potential source of contamination is the operative field itself.1-4

This study was performed on 20 eyes operated upon for retinal detachment by the scleral buckling method with silicone implant to determine the frequency with which specified sites within and adjacent to the wound have bacteria present. In these cases this determination is of particular interest because the skin of the lids is not covered by drapes as is the skin in surgical procedures performed elsewhere in the body. The scleral buckling procedures for retinal detachment are of longer duration than most other