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Prophylaxis in cardiac surgery. A controlled randomized comparison between cefazolin and cefuroxime.

Author(s): Wellens F, Pirlet M, Larbuisson R, De Meireleire F, De Somer P

Affiliation(s): Department of Cardiac Surgery, Onze Lieve Vrouwziekenhuis, Aalst, Belgium.

Publication date & source: 1995, Eur J Cardiothorac Surg., 9(6):325-9.

Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial

In a prospective randomized two center trial, short-term prophylaxis with cefuroxime (CFX) in 189 patients was compared with cefazolin (CFZ) in 196 patients submitted to elective cardiac surgery. A total of 3 g was administered over 24 h in both groups. One major adverse reaction with CFX was noted. Patients were prospectively screened by infectious disease nurses for surgical wound and secondary infections. Sternal wound infections occurred in eight patients treated with CFX and all were minor. One patient from this group eventually died of infectious causes. In the CFZ-treated patients two major and six minor wound infections occurred requiring extensive debridement in two. Secondary infections occurred less frequently in the CFX group (13.2 per 100) than in the CFZ group (16.8 per 100) with two infection-related deaths in the CFX and one in the CFZ group. The most commonly identified organisms were Staphylococcus aureus and a variety of gram-negative organisms. No major differences were observed between the CFX and CFZ groups. Short-term administration of 3 g CFZ or CFX in this study could not demonstrate the advantage of one of the antibiotics used over the other in terms of clinical outcome, incidence or site of infection or organisms identified. The 24 h administration of 3 g CFZ or CFX provided suboptimal prophylaxis for wound infection or secondary infections in patients undergoing elective open heart surgery.

Page last updated: 2006-01-31

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