What is a spine wound infection?
An infection can occur if bacteria enter the surgical wound. This can cause problems in a child’s recovery after spinal fusion, which is why prevention of wound infections after a spinal fusion operation is a top priority for our team.
Parents with kids who have underlying medical conditions may want to discuss infection risk with the surgeon prior to the spine fusion procedure.
Why do we measure spine infections after surgery?
Our spine team is committed to improving outcomes for kids who have spine surgery. A patient who gets this type of infection might have to be readmitted to the hospital, which is why we work so diligently to prevent it.
Monitoring the infection rates in spinal fusion surgeries also helps us investigate what causes the infections.
How many spine surgery site infections have occurred at Children’s Colorado?
In 2018, and for the third year in row, we had zero surgical site infections in standard risk spine fusion patients. We monitor patients for infections for 90 days after surgery.
How has the Orthopedics Institute at Children’s Colorado been able to improve standard spine wound infection rates?
In 2007, the Orthopedics Institute started an interdisciplinary spine infection task force to help reduce wound infections. The task force includes spine surgeons, epidemiologists, infection preventionists, pharmacists, anesthesiologists and nurses.
Through this task force, we’ve been able to monitor our hospital's compliance with evidence-based practices to help prevent infections.
What is the source of this data?
This data comes from medical records of patients who have had a spine fusion surgery at the Orthopedics Institute at Children's Colorado. The information is reviewed regularly by the spine infection task force to track our progress and how we compare to other hospitals.