Microbiologic and histologic assessment of intentional bacterial contamination of bone grafts

J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 2007 Aug;65(8):1490-4. doi: 10.1016/j.joms.2006.10.027.


Purpose: The purpose of this study was to investigate methods of removing pathogenic micro-organisms from bone grafts that have been contaminated during surgery.

Materials and methods: Femora were removed from Sprague-Dawley rats and were divided into sections and contaminated in solutions of the bacteria Staphylococcus aureus, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and Escherichia coli. Contaminated bone specimens in each group were immersed in various solutions for specified periods so their antibacterial effects could be evaluated. After these procedures were performed, bone specimens were cultured in nutrient media. Bone structure was evaluated, and the appropriate decontamination method was selected.

Results: Solutions such as povidone-iodine, neomycin, cephazolin sodium, and rifamycin were found to be effective decontaminants. These solutions did not damage the bone structure. Among these solutions, only rifamycin was effective against all bacteria used in this study to contaminate bone grafts.

Conclusions: Rifamycin seems to be the most suitable agent for the elimination of contamination introduced into bone grafts during surgery.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Absorbable Implants / microbiology*
  • Animals
  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local / pharmacology*
  • Bone Transplantation
  • Bone and Bones / drug effects
  • Bone and Bones / microbiology*
  • Colony Count, Microbial
  • Decontamination / methods
  • Disinfection / methods*
  • Escherichia coli / drug effects
  • Intraoperative Complications / microbiology
  • Male
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa / drug effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Rifamycins / pharmacology
  • Staphylococcus aureus / drug effects


  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local
  • Rifamycins