REVIEW ARTICLE: Infectious DiseaseMinimizing the risk of postoperative infectionManring, MMa; Calhoun, Jason Hb; Marculescu, Cameliac Author Information aDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, School of Medicine, University of Missouri-Columbia, USA bDepartment of Orthopaedic Surgery, College of Medicine, The Ohio State University, USA cDivision of Infectious Disease, Medical University of South Carolina, USA Correspondence to Jason H. Calhoun, M.D., FACS Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, The Ohio State University, N1043 Doan Hall, 410 W 10th Ave Columbus, OH 43210-1228 Tel: +614 293 2165; fax: +614 293 4755; e-mail: [email protected] Current Orthopaedic Practice: August 2009 - Volume 20 - Issue 4 - p 429-436 doi: 10.1097/BCO.0b013e318199d052 Buy Metrics Abstract Surgical site infections occur in approximately 2.6% of the patient population, causing considerable discomfort and expense. We review the microbiology and pathogenesis of surgical site infections and identify the most common risk factors in patients. Steps to reduce infection can be taken in three phases of patient care: preoperative, intraoperative and postoperative. Antimicrobial prophylaxis has emerged as a standard of care in many procedures, and new developments in the operating room environment may improve effectiveness against the development of surgical site infections. Orthopaedic surgeons must take every reasonable measure to reduce the occurrence of postoperative infection. © 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.