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J Wound Care. 2018 Mar 1;27(Sup3):S5-S13. doi: 10.12968/jowc.2018.27.Sup3.S5.

Using negative pressure wound therapy to prevent surgical site infection.

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Consultant Burns and Plastic Surgeon, Professor of Wound Study, Birmingham City University, UK.
Emeritus Professor of Surgery, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, Emeritus Professor of Clinical Sciences, University of Huddersfield and Visiting Professor, Imperial College, London, UK.
Professor of Surgery and Director, Southwestern Academic Limb Salvage Alliance (SALSA), Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, US.
Vice Chairman, Department of Surgery, Chief of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Mount Sinai St Luke's and West Hospitals, Professor of Surgery, Icahn School of Medicine, USA.


It is estimated that, at the very least, 5% of patients who undergo surgery develop a surgical site infection (SSI). There has been much interest in the use of negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) as a prophylactic treatment to reduce the risk of SSI. Evidence suggests it can accelerate healing times, reduce both the length of hospital stay and the frequency of dressing changes, and improve patients' quality of life. The efficacy of traditional and portable NPWT systems is similar. However, the latter has an advantage in that it increases patient mobility and does not hinder individuals from carrying out activities of daily living. There are also economic data suggesting that portable NPWT devices are associated with long-term cost savings.

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