Background: Surgical wound infection (SWI) is a common complication after peripheral vascular surgery. In a prospective study, triclosan-coated sutures were reported to decrease the incidence of surgical site infection after various surgical procedures. The aim of our study was to test the hypothesis that use of triclosan-coated sutures decreases the incidence of SWI after lower limb vascular surgery.
Methods: This prospective, randomized, multicenter, double-blinded trial was conducted between July 2010 and January 2011 in five hospitals in Finland. We randomly allocated 276 patients undergoing lower limb revascularization surgery to a study (n = 139) or a control (n = 137) group. Surgical wounds in the study group were closed with triclosan-coated suture material, and wounds in the control group were closed with noncoated sutures. The main outcome measure was SWI. A surgical wound complication was considered to be an infection if there were bacteria isolated from the wound or if there were areas of localized redness, heat, swelling, and pain around the wound appearing within 30 days after the operative procedure. Logistic regression analysis was used to assess the independent effect of triclosan-coated sutures on the incidence of SWI.
Results: Altogether, 61 (22.1 %) patients developed SWI. SWI occurred in 31 (22.3 %) patients in the study group and in 30 (21.9 %) patients in the control group (odds ratio 1.10, 95% confidence interval 0.61-2.01, p = 0.75.)
Conclusions: The use of triclosan-coated sutures does not reduce the incidence of SWI after lower limb vascular surgery.