Treatment Algorithm for Surgical Site Infections Following Extensor Mechanism Repair
»: Despite general agreement regarding techniques for extensor mechanism repair, there is very limited guidance in the literature for the management of surgical site infections (SSIs) that may occur after these procedures. »: Early or mild superficial SSIs, such as cellulitis, can be managed on an outpatient basis while monitoring for improvement, with escalated intervention if the symptoms do not resolve within 1 week. »: Deep SSIs should be managed more aggressively with surgical irrigation and debridement (I&D), including the knee joint, depending on the results of the aspiration, removal of all braided nonabsorbable suture (if necessary) with immediate or delayed exchange with monofilament suture, and the administration of parenteral antibiotics based on culture results and an infectious disease consult. »: Arthrocentesis should be performed early to monitor for the spread of infection to the joint space, and diagnosis of a septic knee joint should be immediately followed by arthroscopic or open I&D. »: For refractory cases (i.e., wound coverage issues or persistent infections despite multiple attempts at debridement), a consult with a plastic surgeon for consideration of a gastrocnemius flap is recommended, and surgeons should remain suspicious of the possibility of the contiguous spread of osteomyelitis.