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      [Vacuum assisted closure therapy for the treatment of sternal wound infections after heart transplantation: preliminary results].

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          Abstract

          Sternal wound infection after heart transplantation is a feared and potentially life threatening complication with reported incidences between 2.5 % and 3.6 %. However, optimal therapy of sternal wound infections in heart transplant recipients remains a matter of controversy, particularly the effect of immunosuppression in those patients is still unclear. We examined 5 heart transplanted patients (4 men and 1 woman with a median age of 46 +/- 21.4 years (ranging from 14 to 59 years) in terms of inflammation and treatment response during VAC therapy. Infection begin was median 18.2 days (+/- 10 days, ranging from 5 to 28 days) after transplantation. VAC therapy lasted on average 12.2 +/- 2 days, ranging from 10 to 19 days. A median of 3 changes (range from 3 to 5) were necessary until the definitive closure. We examined C-reactive protein, leucocyte count and fibrinogen 2 days pre VAC, during VAC treatment and 2 days after definitive closure. All five patients showed an increase of leucocytes at every VAC change. Furthermore, we saw an adequate reaction to the VAC in terms of granulation tissue growth and resolution of infection. Transplanted patients had an increase of leucocytes at every VAC change. Furthermore all patients showed an adequate response of VAC treatment in terms of granulation tissue in growth and infection decline. Therefore a reduction of immunosuppressive therapy is not necessary, which in turn would increase the risk of rejection.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Zentralbl Chir
          Zentralblatt fur Chirurgie
          Georg Thieme Verlag KG
          0044-409X
          0044-409X
          Apr 2007
          : 132
          : 2
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Dept. Cardiothoracic Surgery, Medical University of Vienna, Austria, Europe. t9204604@hotmail.com
          Article
          10.1055/s-2007-960650
          17516320

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