The Journal of Arthroplasty, Volume 32, Issue 4, 1255 - 1261

A Standardized Regimen for the Treatment of Acute Postoperative Infections and Acute Hematogenous Infections Associated With Hip and Knee Arthroplasties

Fink, Bernd et al.
Hip Knee


Papers concerning the treatment of periprosthetic infections and acute hematogenous infections often concern inhomogeneous treatment concepts or low numbers of patients; this results in inconsistent rates of treatment success.


Thirty-nine patients with early periprosthetic infections and 28 patients with acute hematogenous infections were treated with a homogeneous concept and followed with a mean period of 41.8 (24-132) months in order to investigate the success rate and influencing factors. All patients were treated with open surgical debridement, a revision of all removable components and irrigation with an antiseptic solution (octinedine). All patients received a systemic vancomycin/rifampicin antibiotic therapy until the microorganism causing the infection could be identified; a specific antibiotic therapy then followed until the end of the sixth week.


This unified treatment regimen resulted in an overall success rate of 71.6%, an 82.1% success for early infections and 57.1% for acute hematogenous infections. Variables that influenced the recurrence of an infection were the timespan between revision and first appearance of symptoms (<2 days), the number of previous operations, the American Society of Anesthesiologists classification, and nicotine abuse.


It appears that, in cases of early postoperative infection, a reproducibly high rate of success in retaining an implant can be achieved with this specific therapy regime if surgical intervention can be carried out within 2 days of first symptoms.

Download article