Comparison of the prevalence of surgical site infection with use of sterile versus nonsterile gloves for resection and reconstruction during Mohs surgery

Dermatol Surg. 2014 Mar;40(3):234-9. doi: 10.1111/dsu.12438. Epub 2014 Jan 22.


Background: The prevalence of surgical site infection (SSI) is low with Mohs micrographic surgery (MMS). It has not been determined whether sterile gloves (SG) or nonsterile gloves (NSG) should be used for resection and reconstruction during MMS.

Objective: To compare the SSI rate with the use of SG and NSG for MMS, including reconstruction, and to determine whether SG help prevent SSI.

Materials & methods: Data were collected and recorded for Mohs cases in which SG or NSG were used. Infected cases and SSI rate for SG and NSG were also recorded. Chi-square analysis was performed to compare SSI.

Results: There were 1,004 tumors in 942 patients in the SG group and 1,021 tumors in 941 patients in the NSG group. The prevalence of infection was 0.50% in the SG group and 0.49% in the NSG group (p = .82). The cost of gloves was $5.66 for one SG case and $1.63 for one NSG case.

Conclusion: The prevalence of infection with SG and NSG was almost identical. The cost to use SG was 3.5 times as great as for NSG. The use of NSG for MMS and reconstruction is safe and cost effective.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Gloves, Surgical* / economics
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mohs Surgery*
  • Prevalence
  • Risk Factors
  • Skin Neoplasms / surgery*
  • Sterilization
  • Surgical Wound Infection / epidemiology*
  • Surgical Wound Infection / prevention & control*