Wound management for severe open fractures: use of antibiotic bead pouches and vacuum-assisted closure.

Mark L. Prasarn, Gregory A Zych, Peter A W Ostermann

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Open fractures complicated by infection, or those requiring extensive soft-tissue procedures, are disabling problems for patients and result in significant costs for the health care system. As an adjuvant to current protocols involving open fractures, antibiotic bead pouches (ABPs) provide high concentrations of local antibiotics and can help reduce infection rates. Vacuum-assisted closure (VAC) has been shown to decrease the need for, and enhance the success of, free-flap coverage for traumatic wounds that are significant enough to preclude primary closure, delayed primary closure, or healing by secondary intention. These 2 modalities may help decrease the complications and costs involved in the management of severe open fractures. In this article, we review the theory, technique, and efficacy of ABPs and VAC in the management of severe open fractures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-563
Number of pages5
JournalAmerican journal of orthopedics (Belle Mead, N.J.)
Issue number11
StatePublished - Nov 1 2009
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)

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