Clinical Parameters and Challenges of Managing Cervicofacial Necrotizing Fasciitis in a Sub‑Saharan Tertiary Hospital
Introduction: Necrotizing fasciitis is a severe soft tissue infection. In our environment, patients presenting with this infection are usually financially incapacitated and, therefore, their management can be challenging. This paper aimed to document the pattern and challenges encountered in the management of cervicofacial necrotizing fasciitis (CNF) in the University College Hospital, Ibadan.
Materials and Methods: Information such as biodata, site of infection, systemic conditions, widest span of defect, management provided, hospital stay, and outcome of management was prospectively collected on all patients with CNF who presented at the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery between January 2007 and December 2013. The patients were managed according to a devised protocol of antibiotic therapy, serial debridement and honey dressings.
Results: Twenty‑four cases of CNF were seen. There were 9 males and 15 females while 70.9% of the patients belonged to the low socioeconomic class. The mean span of wound defect was 12.2 (±8.844) cm. The mean hospital stay was 27.8 (±23.1) days, and scar formation was the most common complication encountered.
Conclusion: Our study represents the largest series of CNF from a Nigerian health facility presently. The management of necrotizing fascitis in the maxillofacial region poses a significant challenge to both the surgeon and the patient. However, the mortality rate of CNF in our center appears comparatively low.
Keywords: Cervicofacial necrotizing fasciitis, management, outcome