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Medline ® Abstract for Reference 48

of 'Necrotizing soft tissue infections'

Genital Fournier's gangrene: experience with 38 patients.
Hejase MJ, Simonin JE, Bihrle R, Coogan CL
Urology. 1996;47(5):734.
OBJECTIVES: Fournier's gangrene (FG) is an extensive fulminant infection of the genitals, perineum, or the abdominal wall. We report our experience with the management of this difficult infectious disease.
METHODS: Thirty-eight patients were admitted with the diagnosis of FG between May 1993 and May 1995. All patients were treated with broad-spectrum triple antimicrobial therapy, broad debridement, exhaustive cleaning, and application of unprocessed honey dressings. Patients then underwent split-thickness skin grafts or delayed closure as needed.
RESULTS: Patient ages ranged between 33 and 86 years (mean, 54) with a mean hospital stay of 17 days (range, 1 to 45). Sixty-six percent of the patients were diabetic, 16% had previous orchiepididymitis, and 5% had scrotal and urethral trauma. All the patients underwent surgical debridement and application of unprocessed honey to the wound. Cystostomy was performed in 60% of the patients and 21% underwent orchiectomy of the affected side. Free skin grafts were applied to 6 patients (16%) and the remaining wounds, once clean, were approximated. One patient died as a result of severe metabolic acidosis and sepsis.
CONCLUSIONS: The management of this infectious entity should be aggressive. Patients with FG need extensive debridement and cystostomy or colostomy when necessary. Broad-spectrum triple antimicrobial regimen and aggressive debridement are mandatory. Topical application of unprocessed honey is beneficial to the healing process. A minority of patients require split-thickness skin grafts on denuded areas.
Department of Urology, Hospital General de Zona no. 33, IMSS, Monterry, Nuevo Leon, Mexico.