People having surgery in low income Countries are more likely to develop an Infection than those in wealthier nations, which may be linked to drug-resistant bacteria, research suggests.
The findings shed light on a link between antibiotic use and infection and highlight an urgent need to tackle surgical infection in low income nations, scientists say.
Infection at the site of a surgical wound is a complication that prolongs recovery times for patients and can be fatal. Until now, the extent of the problem in low income countries was unknown.
To address this, researchers looked at hospital records -- from 66 low, middle and high income countries -- for more than 12,000 patients undergoing surgery on the digestive system.
Patients in low income countries were 60 per cent more likely to have an infection in the weeks following an operation compared with high and middle income countries.
Those who developed a wound infection were more likely to die, although the infection was not necessarily the cause of death. Infected patients were also found to stay in hospital three times longer.
Drug-resistant bacteria do not respond to antibiotics, making it hard to treat infection. Their spread has been linked to overuse of antibiotics and is an urgent global healthcare challenge.
Aneel Bhangu et al. Surgical site infection after gastrointestinal surgery in high-income, middle-income, and low-income countries: a prospective, international, multicentre cohort study. The Lancet Infectious Diseases, 2018; DOI: 10.1016/S1473-3099(18)30101-4
Posted by Dr. Tim Sandle