Can Bioerodible Drugs Reduce Surgical Site Infections and Problems with Current Solutions?
A common risk associated with surgery is the infection that follows the operation. Surgical Site Infections (SSI’s) are a public health concern, caused by infectious bacteria at surgical wound sites. SSI’s can lead to a range of complications after surgeries, resulting in minor to severe infections, or even death. Staphylococcus aureus is the bacteria strain most associated with SSI’s. Endogenous bacteria that normally resides in the body or on the skin, and exogenous bacteria, brought in from outside sources such as procedure tools or the hospital itself, can both lead to infection at the surgical site. Rapid growth of Staphylococcus aureus or bacteria alike can occur on implants of plastic or metal, which are used in various types of procedures, such as cardiac, orthopedic, or plastic surgeries. SSI’s can range from only infecting the skin, to spreading deep into the body’s organs.
A common practice to prevent infections during surgery is the usage of prophylaxis. In this method, antibiotics are generally given hours before and days following the surgery. While prophylactic antibiotics have shown to decrease infections at surgical sites, the methodology of prophylaxis can often lead to long term adverse effects. There are no set guidelines as to which drugs to use and how long to use them after surgery occurs. Surgeons can choose after assessing patients on a case by case basis. However, logistics of how they are given can lead to antimicrobial resistance. When antibiotics are used too frequently or at too high of a dose, cells have an opportunity to become resistant to that antibiotic and multiply. The body no longer fights off that bacteria with the usage of antibiotics, creating a serious problem. In terms of prophylaxis, if antibiotics are given at the wrong time too early before surgery, they can become ineffective. If antibiotics are given for too long after surgery, the body can become resistant to those antibiotics. Additionally, patients may forget to finish their antibiotics or stop using them as they will not see it actively helping, which again, can lead to this problem.
To prevent potential problems of antimicrobial resistance that come along with prophylactic drugs used for surgeries, a resorbable drug implant can be a potential fix. Hera Health Solutions, a pharmaceutical device company, has developed a bioerodible drug implant to be used as a method of contraception. With the same philosophy, methodology, and technology, bioerodible drugs can be created to reduce SSI’s. Using a bioerodible drug at the site of surgical procedures will lower the risk of infection while eliminating potential problems that current methods, such as prophylaxis, poses. This drug delivery implant can contain different antibiotics and doses, depending on what type of procedure occurred and how much medication is needed. Products can be tailored to be fast acting, with high amounts of antibiotics that dissolve quickly, or can be created to stay at the site of the wound for long periods of time with lower doses of medication given. As it will be inserted at the surgical site, there will be no concerns of time- related issues that can lead to antibiotic resistance issues. Additionally, it will be directly present to heal the wound, making it fast acting. It’s bioerodible nature will eliminate any pain or discomfort in regards to the product, because it will never have to be surgically removed. Hera Health Solution’s technology can be used to solve SSI’s and related problems that current solutions pose.