Surveillance of post-caesarean surgical site infections in a hospital with limited resources, Cambodia

J Infect Dev Ctries. 2013 Aug 15;7(8):579-85. doi: 10.3855/jidc.2981.


Introduction: In Cambodia, we implemented a pilot surveillance of superficial surgical site infections (SSSI) following caesarean deliveries (CD) in a provincial hospital, to estimate their incidence, describe their clinical management, and determine their causative pathogens.

Methodology: Between October 2010 and February 2011, all women admitted for CD were included in the surveillance. Their clinical condition was monitored for a post-operative period of 30 days, including two assessments performed by surgeons. Cases were clinically diagnosed by surgeons, with bacterial cultures performed.

Results: Of the 222 patients admitted for CD, 176 (79.3%) were monitored for 30 days. Of these, 11 were diagnosed with a SSSI, giving an incidence rate of 6.25% (95% CI 3.2-10.9). Four of the cases (36.4%) were detected after hospital discharge. Length of hospitalization was significantly longer for the SSSI cases. All 222 patients were prescribed antibiotics. Ampicillin was administered intravenously to 98.6% of them, with subsequent oral amoxicillin given to 82.9%. Three of six pus samples collected were positive on culture: two with Staphylococcus aureus and one with Staphylococcus lugdunensis. One S.aureus was methicillin resistant (MRSA). The other was clindamycin and erythromycin resistant.

Conclusion: Surveillance of health-care associated infections in a setting with limited resources is challenging but feasible. Effective post-discharge surveillance was essential for the estimation of the incidence rate of SSSI following caesarean deliveries. This surveillance led to a peer-review of medical practices.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Bacteria / classification
  • Bacteria / isolation & purification
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy
  • Bacterial Infections / epidemiology*
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Cambodia / epidemiology
  • Cesarean Section / adverse effects*
  • Developing Countries
  • Epidemiological Monitoring
  • Female
  • Hospitals
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Middle Aged
  • Pregnancy
  • Surgical Wound Infection / drug therapy
  • Surgical Wound Infection / epidemiology*
  • Surgical Wound Infection / microbiology
  • Young Adult