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CRITICAL TIMING

ANCHOR LEAD: FOR INFECTION PREVENTION RELATED TO SURGERY, A WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY EXISTS, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS

One hour before complex surgery, children should be given antibiotics to prevent infections.  That’s one finding of a Johns Hopkins study led by Aaron Milstone, a pediatric infectious disease expert.

MILSTONE:  One of the things we found that was highly significant was when preoperative antibiotics were delivered to patients.  And we found that if antibiotics weren’t given within what some people consider the appropriate window the risk of infection went up three and a half found after surgery.  So globally this is a large problem.  The CDC estimates over a half million of these infections occur each year, and we wanted to try to think of things we could do for children.              :26

While application of this finding to all children who must have surgery wasn’t studied, Milstone speculates that broader implementation of this rule would help avert many perioperative infections.  He also suggests that adults too, could benefit from antibiotics during this one hour window.  I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.


-- JHMI --
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