Oral health care reduces the risk of postoperative surgical site infection in inpatients with oral squamous cell carcinoma
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- Sato, J., Goto, J., Harahashi, A. et al. Support Care Cancer (2011) 19: 409. doi:10.1007/s00520-010-0853-6
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Postoperative wound infection (WI) is a main complication after head and neck surgery. Poor oral health may be a risk factor for WI. We therefore assessed the contribution of oral health care in preventing postoperative WI in patients with oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC).
A total of 66 consecutive inpatients with OSCC (mean age, 68 years) was divided into two groups that did or did not receive oral health care. There were no significant between group differences in gender, age, or T-, N-, or clinical stage. Patients in the care group were given oral health care plans by doctors of oral medicine, whereas patients in the control group were not. Twenty-three variables were recorded for each patient.
WI was observed in 14/66 patients (21%), three (3/33 = 9%) in the care group and 11 (11/33 = 33%) in the control group (p < 0.025). Univariate statistical analysis showed that 11 factors correlated with WI significantly: T-stage, clinical stage, wearing of dentures, tracheostomy, neck dissection, tissue transplantation, oral health care, preoperative radiation, blood transfusion, operation time, and blood loss. In multiple logistic regression analysis, only two factors were significant independent risk factors for WI: tissue transplantation (p = 0.01; odds ratio, 24.5) and lack of oral health care (p = 0.04; odds ratio, 6.0).
Oral health care may reduce the risk of postoperative WI in patients with OSCC.