A Randomized, Clinical Trial of Preadmission Chlorhexidine Skin Preparation for Lower Extremity Total Joint Arthroplasty

A Randomized, Clinical Trial of Preadmission Chlorhexidine Skin Preparation for Lower Extremity Total Joint Arthroplasty

Bhaveen H. Kapadia, MD, Randa K. Elmallah, MD, Michael A. Mont, MD 

The Journal of Arthroplasty 31 (2016) 2856e- 2861



Background: Periprosthetic infections are devastating postoperative complications of total joint arthroplasty (TJA), with native skin flora commonly identified as causative organisms. We compared 2% chlorhexidine gluconateeimpregnated cloths to standard-of-care antiseptic bathing in patients before TJA, to evaluate periprosthetic infection risk at 1-year follow-up.

Methods: This was a prospective, randomized, controlled trial at a single institution of patients undergoing hip or knee arthroplasty. Chlorhexidine-treated patients (275 arthroplasties) applied 2% chlorhexidine gluconatee impregnated cloths the night before and morning of admission. The standardof-care cohort (279 arthroplasties) bathed with soap and water preadmission. Patients were excluded according to the following: (1) unable to comply with study requirements, (2) pregnant, (3) <18 years, (4) medical history of immunosuppression or steroid use, (5) chronic hepatitis B/C infection, (6) had infection around joint requiring surgery, or (7) chose not to participate. A total of 539 patients (554 arthroplasties) were included in the final population. There were no significant differences in American Society of Anesthesiologists grade, cut time, risk scores, or diabetes and smoking prevalence between cohorts (P > .05).

Results: A lower periprosthetic infection rate was found in the chlorhexidine cohort (0.4%) when compared to standard-of-care cohorts (2.9%). The infection odds ratio was 8.15 (95% confidence interval ¼ 1.01-65.6; P ¼ .049) for the standard-of-care cohort compared to the chlorhexidine cohort. No differences in assessed risk factors were found between groups. No severe adverse events were observed.

Conclusions: Preoperative chlorhexidine cloth use decreased the risk of periprosthetic infection. This may be an appropriate antiseptic protocol to implement for patients undergoing lower extremity TJA.


LEER MÁS: clorhexidina preop artroplastias

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