June 2013

Studies suggest antimicrobial dressings reduce infections, wound complications

Skillman, NJ-based ConvaTec reported in May that two recent studies suggest its Aquacel Ag Surgical cover dressing has benefits over standard dressings for prevention of wound complications. The antimicrobial dressing is designed to protect surgical incisions with a waterproof viral and bacterial barrier that allows for greater postsurgical range of motion and comfort than standard dressings.

In the first study clinicians at the OrthoCarolina Hip and Knee Center in Charlotte, NC, randomly assigned 150 patients undergoing knee replacement to postsurgical care with either Aquacel Ag Surgical cover dressing or a standard gauze and tape surgical dressing.

Among patients who received standard dressings 43% developed wound complications, such as skin blistering and prolonged healing, compared with 23% who received the antimicrobial dressing.

Patients also rated their perceptions of the dressings with regard to hygiene and activities of daily living. Those using Aquacel reported higher satisfaction on measures such as the ability to shower, change clothes, and sit and sleep comfortably than those using standard dressings.

Investigators presented results from a second study that compared ConvaTec’s  Aquacel Ag Surgical dressing  to conventional dressing.

This retrospective study of infections in 1778 patients who had undergone knee or hip replacement surgery showed Aquacel reduced the incidence of joint infections by 76% compared with standard gauze dressing.

Both studies were presented at the 2013 Annual Meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, held in March in Chicago.

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