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Hip and Knee Operations

Wound infections, Hip and Knee Surgery

Wound infections for hip and knee operations are significantly below international benchmarks. Many germs live in and on our body and also in our environment. Most germs are harmless and our bodies have natural defenses against the few germs that can cause harm. Our skin, for example, prevents germs from entering our bodies. A surgical wound infection occurs when the germs enter the incision that the surgeon makes through your skin in order to carry out the operation.

A surgical wound infection can develop at any time from two to three days after the surgery until the wound is healed (usually two or three weeks after the operation ). Very occasionally, an infection can occur several months after an operation.

Most surgical wounds are limited to the skin, but can spread occasionally to deeper tissues. Infections are more likely to occur after the surgery on parts of the body that harbour lots of germs such as the gut. Wound infections are relatively uncommon for hip and knee surgery patients.

In Blackrock Clinic we have a robust infection prevention programme, pre, during and post-surgery. This programme has proven to maintain lower infection rates across all patient categories.