The Effects of Intraoperative Hypothermia on Surgical Site Infection An Analysis of 524 Trauma Laparotomies

Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care, Department of Surgery, Cooper University Hospital, Camden, NJ 08103, USA.
Annals of surgery (Impact Factor: 8.33). 03/2012; 255(4):789-95. DOI: 10.1097/SLA.0b013e31824b7e35
Source: PubMed


Our primary study objective was to determine whether intraoperative hypothermia predisposes patients to postoperative surgical site infections (SSI) after trauma laparotomy.
Although intraoperative normothermia is an important quality performance measure for patients undergoing colorectal surgery, the effects of intraoperative hypothermia on SSI remain unstudied in trauma.
A review of all patients (July 2003-June 2008) who survived 4 days or more after urgent trauma laparotomy at a level I trauma center revealed 524 patients. Patient characteristics, along with preoperative and intraoperative care focusing on SSI risk factors, including the depth and duration of intraoperative hypothermia, were evaluated. The primary outcome measure was the diagnosis of SSI within 30 days of surgery. Cut-point analysis of the entire range of lowest intraoperative temperature measurements established the temperature nadir that best predicted SSI development. Single and multiple variable logistic regression determined SSI predictors.
The mean intraoperative temperature nadir of the study population (n = 524) was 35.2°C ± 1.1°C and 30.5% had at least 1 temperature measurement less than 35°C. Patients who developed SSI (36.1%) had a lower mean intraoperative temperature nadir (P = 0.009) and had a greater number of intraoperative temperature measurements <35°C (P < 0.001) than those who did not. Cut-point analysis revealed an intraoperative temperature of 35°C as the nadir temperature most predictive of SSI development. Multivariate analysis determined that a single intraoperative temperature measurement less than 35°C independently increased the site infection risk 221% per degree below 35°C (OR: 2.21; 95% CI: 1.24-3.92, P = 0.007).
Just as intraoperative hypothermia is an SSI risk factor in patients undergoing elective colorectal procedures, intraoperative hypothermia less than 35°C adversely affects SSI rates after trauma laparotomy. Our results suggest that intraoperative normothermia should be strictly maintained in patients undergoing operative trauma procedures.

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    • "Although there are no consistent findings reported in the hypothermic trauma patient, continuous cardiac monitoring and evaluation of metabolic parameters is warranted. Infection risk for surgical site infections and pneumonia has been shown to be associated with hypothermia [117-119]. Although data to support a strong cause and effect relationship for hypothermia and increased morbidity and mortality, does not exist, our institution targets normothermia throughout the resuscitation and early ICU phase of care. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Care of the polytrauma patient does not end in the operating room or resuscitation bay. The patient presenting to the intensive care unit following initial resuscitation and damage control surgery may be far from stable with ongoing hemorrhage, resuscitation needs, and injuries still requiring definitive repair. The intensive care physician must understand the respiratory, cardiovascular, metabolic, and immunologic consequences of trauma resuscitation and massive transfusion in order to evaluate and adjust the ongoing resuscitative needs of the patient and address potential complications. In this review, we address ongoing resuscitation in the intensive care unit along with potential complications in the trauma patient after initial resuscitation. Complications such as abdominal compartment syndrome, transfusion related patterns of acute lung injury and metabolic consequences subsequent to post-trauma resuscitation are presented. Methods A non-systematic literature search was conducted using PubMed and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews up to May 2012. Results and conclusion Polytrauma patients with severe shock from hemorrhage and massive tissue injury present major challenges for management and resuscitation in the intensive care setting. Many of the current recommendations for “damage control resuscitation” including the use of fixed ratios in the treatment of trauma induced coagulopathy remain controversial. A lack of large, randomized, controlled trials leaves most recommendations at the level of consensus, expert opinion. Ongoing trials and improvements in monitoring and resuscitation technologies will further influence how we manage these complex and challenging patients.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2012 · Scandinavian Journal of Trauma Resuscitation and Emergency Medicine
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    ABSTRACT: Although hypothermia is widely accepted as a risk factor for subsequent infection in surgical patients, it has not been well defined in medical patients. We sought to assess the risk of acquiring intensive care unit (ICU)--acquired infection after hypothermia among medical ICU patients. Adults (≥18 years) admitted to French ICUs for at least 2 days between April 2000 and November 2010 were included. Surgical patients were excluded. Patient were classified as having had mild hypothermia (35.0°C-35.9°C), moderate hypothermia (32°C-34.9°C), or severe hypothermia (<32°C), and were followed for the development of pneumonia or bloodstream infection until ICU discharge. A total of 6237 patients were included. Within the first day of admission, 648 (10%) patients had mild hypothermia, 288 (5%) patients had moderate hypothermia, and 45 (1%) patients had severe hypothermia. Among the 5256 patients who did not have any hypothermia at day 1, subsequent hypothermia developed in 868 (17%), of which 673 (13%), 176 (3%), and 19 (<1%) patients had lowest temperatures of 35.0°C-35.9°C, 32.0°C-34.9°C, and <32°C, respectively. During the course of ICU admission, 320 (5%) patients developed ICU-acquired bloodstream infection and 724 (12%) patients developed ICU-acquired pneumonia. After controlling for confounding variables in multivariable analyses, severe hypothermia was found to increase the risk for subsequent ICU-acquired infection, particularly in patients who did not present with severe sepsis or septic shock. The presence of severe hypothermia is a risk factor for development of ICU-acquired infection in medical patients.
    Preview · Article · Jan 2012 · Clinical Infectious Diseases
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    Full-text · Article · Jun 2012 · Critical Care
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