Deep Sternal Wound Infection after Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery: Management and Risk Factor Analysis for Mortality


  • Gunduz Yumun
  • Burak Erdolu
  • Faruk Toktas
  • Cuneyt Eris
  • Derih Ay
  • Tamer Turk
  • Ahmet Kagan As



Background: Deep sternal wound infection is a life-threatening complication after cardiac surgery. The aim of this study was to investigate the factors leading to mortality, and to explore wound management techniques on deep sternal wound infection after coronary artery bypass surgery.

Methods: Between 2008 and 2013, 58 patients with deep sternal wound infection were analyzed. Risk factors for mortality and morbidity including age, gender, body mass index, smoking status, chronic renal failure, hypertension, diabetes, and treatment choice were investigated.

Results: In this study, 19 patients (32.7%) were treated by primary surgical closure (PSC), and 39 patients (67.3%) were treated by delayed surgical closure following a vacuum-assisted closure system (VAC). Preoperative patient characteristics were similar between the groups. Fourteen patients (24.1%) died in the postoperative first month. The mortality rate and mean duration of hospitalization in the PSC group was higher than in the VAC group (P = .026, P = .034). Significant risk factors for mortality were additional operation, diabetes mellitus, and a high level of EuroSCORE.

Conclusions: Delayed surgical closure following VAC therapy may be associated with shorter hospitalization and lower mortality in patients with deep sternal wound infection. Additional operation, diabetes mellitus, and a high level of EuroSCORE were associated with mortality.


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How to Cite

Yumun, G., Erdolu, B., Toktas, F., Eris, C., Ay, D., Turk, T., & As, A. K. (2014). Deep Sternal Wound Infection after Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery: Management and Risk Factor Analysis for Mortality. The Heart Surgery Forum, 17(4), E212-E216.