Applying an additional skin prepping after you've placed the surgical drapes but before you've placed the incise drape can dramatically reduce the incidence of SSIs in patients undergoing total joint replacement, a new study suggests.
For the study, researchers divided 578 patients into 2 groups. Both groups underwent standard pre-operative chlorhexidine showers and povidone-iodine-alcohol skin preps before surgical draping. One of the groups, however, was prepped again with an iodine povacrylex-alcohol combination before incise drapes were applied.
The group that was given an additional prep saw an SSI rate of 1.8%, as compared to 6.5% in the other group. The study was presented at the AAOS annual meeting last week.