Pin-Tract Infections Following External Fixation of Open Fractures

  • JN Kortor
  • TM Kpela
  • SO Poopola
Keywords: External fixation, infection, open fractures, pin-tract


Background: Pin-tract infection is a major complication of external fixation which in some cases compromises the stability of ty of pin-tract infections in open fractures treated by external fixation. Methodology: This is a retrospective study that reviewed patients who underwent external fixation with unilateral fixator for open fractures in our center between February 2009 and March 2010. Wound swabs for culture and sensitivity were obtained from patients with clinical evidence of pin-tract infections. Pin-tract infection was graded according to Paley's method. Results: A total of 102 patients who had external fixation for open fractures were reviewed. The male female ratio was 1.4:1. Open fractures of tibia (73.5%) were found to be the commonest. This was followed by radius (15.1%), humerus (8.2%), and femur (4.1%). Positive cultures were obtained from 32 samples out of 35 and staphylococcus aureus was the commonest organism isolated. Drainage (51.4%) was found to be the commonest pin related complication. Conclusion: pin-tract infection is a serious complication associated with external fixation and meticulous surgical techniques and proper pin care should be ensured in order to minimize these pin related complications.

Key Words External fixation, infection, open fractures, pin-tract


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eISSN: 2276-7096