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Papers of the Week

2021 May 21

Medicine (Baltimore)



Postoperative contact dermatitis caused by skin adhesives used in orthopedic surgery: Incidence, characteristics, and difference from surgical site infection.


Skin adhesives are used to close clean surgical wounds. We aimed to investigate the incidence of skin adhesive-related contact dermatitis and the characteristics that differentiate it from a surgical site infection.We retrospectively analyzed patients whose surgical wound was closed using a liquid skin adhesive (Dermabond Prineo skin closure system, Ethicon, NJ) by a single surgeon between March 2018 and June 2020. Medical records were reviewed to evaluate complications indicating contact dermatitis, including wound infections and hematomas.We included 143 patients (men, 59; women, 84; mean age, 60.8 years). No patient had an early surgical site infection or wound dehiscence, but 4 (2.8%) developed postoperative contact dermatitis (week 7, 1; week 4, 2; day 9, 1). Manifestations included eczema and pruritus, without local heat or wound discharge. All cases resolved without complications, including infection.Contact dermatitis occurred in 2.8% of patients who received liquid skin adhesive, and the symptoms differed from those of surgical site infection. Patients should be informed about the risk of contact dermatitis before applying a liquid skin adhesive.