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Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2011 Oct;469(10):2889-94. doi: 10.1007/s11999-011-1877-z. Epub 2011 May 12.

Perioperative infection rate in patients with osteosarcomas treated with resection and prosthetic reconstruction.

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  • 1Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Qilu Hospital of Shandong University, Jinan, Shandong, China.



The incidence of perioperative infection after segmental tumor endoprosthetic replacement in previous reports varies from a high of 7.4% to a low of 2.6%. Appropriate antibiotic use for this group is unknown and controversial, whereas the relationship of antibiotic use and perioperative infection is unclear.


We determined the incidence of perioperative infection in patients with osteosarcoma treated with segmental prosthetic replacement using a standard perioperative antibiotic regimen and the incidence of late infections and wound complications.


We retrospectively reviewed the records of 53 patients with osteosarcoma undergoing segmental prosthetic replacements from 1993 to 2008. There were 30 males and 23 females ranging from 10 to 78 years of age. All patients were given intraoperative antibiotics (intravenous cefazolin), continued for 3 days postoperatively and then given orally for 5 days. Patients who were allergic to penicillin or cefazolin were given vancomycin followed by clindamycin. A perioperative infection was defined as a deep infection within 2 months after prosthetic reconstruction. The minimum followup was 1 year (range, 1-15 years).


We identified one confirmed perioperative prosthetic infection (1/53; 1.9%) (Enterobacter cloacae and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus) in a 78-year-old woman after proximal tibial replacement, gastrocnemius flap, and skin graft. Her infection was controlled with d├ębridement, drainage, and intravenous antibiotics. Three patients had late infections, two of which were culture negative. Four patients had wound complications that required further surgery.


The antibiotic regimen we used is longer than that recommended for patients having routine total joint arthroplasty. Its appropriateness will require comparison with alternate regimens, including those of shorter duration.


Level IV, therapeutic study. See the Guidelines for Authors for a complete description of levels of evidence.

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