Do Not Get Body Parts Shaved Before Surgery To Prevent Surgical Site Infections
Convert this page to a PDF
Posted: Sunday, June 19, 2011
by Dr K K Aggarwal
Heart Care Foundation of India
Hair removal is commonly performed before any surgery to provide the surgeon with a "clean" field and to prevent hair from falling into the surgical site, said Padma Shri and Dr B C Roy National Awardee Dr K K Aggarwal, President, Heart Care Foundation of India. Many reports have however indicated an increased risk for surgical site infections in patients undergoing preoperative hair removal.
The lowest rates of surgical site infections are reported when hair is removed just prior to the surgical incision.
Neurosurgeons question the need for hair shaving in brain surgery. Those who do not remove the hair follow the following
1. Patients have their hair washed with shampoo and 4 % chlorhexidine within 24 hours of their operation.
2. In the operating room, the surgical site is scrubbed for 8 to 10 minutes with 4 % chlorhexidine diluted with water, and then cleansed with 10 % povidone-iodine solution.
3. Prophylactic antibiotics are administered for three days.
The current view is that there is no difference in rate of surgical site infections among patients who have their hair removed prior to surgery and those who have not. If hair needs to be removed, it should be clipped rather than shaved, as patients who are shaved were more likely to develop surgical site infections.
This Article has been viewed 2,040 times. (Not updated in real-time.)No comments yet.