Is there a current role for preoperative non-absorbable oral antimicrobial agents for prophylaxis of infection after colorectal surgery?


In numerous scientific studies, oral antibiotic bowel preparation has reduced surgical site infections in patients undergoing colorectal surgery. The historical evolution of antibiotic bowel preparation is presented with a review of the scientific basis of its effectiveness.

Successful oral antibiotic bowel preparation requires effective mechanical preparation. The progressive shift of preoperative preparation to the outpatient setting has led to a reduction in the use of oral antibiotics. Such preparation, however, continues to be effective although in current surgical practice is often augmented with perioperative, parenteral antimicrobials.

Oral antibiotic bowel preparation has a role in the prevention of surgical site infection in the patient undergoing colorectal surgery.

Review of the pertinent English language literature.

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