Vassil Traykov, Maria Grazia Bongiorni, Giuseppe Boriani, Haran Burri, Roberto Costa, Nikolaos Dagres, Jean-Claude Deharo, Laurence M Epstein, Paola Anna Erba, Ulrika Snygg-Martin, Jens Cosedis Nielsen, Jeanne E Poole, Laszlo Saghy, Christoph Starck, Neil Strathmore, Carina Blomström-Lundqvist
Aims: Cardiac implantable electronic device (CIED) infection rates are increasing. Worldwide compliance and disparities to published guidelines for the prevention, diagnosis and management of these conditions are not well elucidated. The purpose of this survey, therefore, was to clarify these issues through an inquiry to arrhythmia-related associations and societies worldwide.
Methods and results: A questionnaire comprising 15 questions related to CIED infections was distributed among members of seven arrhythmia societies worldwide. A total of 234 centres in 62 countries reported implantation rates of which 159 (68.0%) performed more than 200 device implantations per year and 14 (6.0%) performed fewer than 50 implantations per year. The reported rates of CIED infections for 2017 were ≤2% in 78.7% of the centres, while the infection rates exceeded 5% in 7.8% of the centres. Preventive measures for CIED infection differed from published recommendations and varied among different regions mainly in terms of pocket irrigation and administering post-operative antimicrobial therapy the use of which was reported by 39.9% and 44% of the respondents, respectively. Antibacterial envelopes were used by 37.7% of the respondents in selected circumstances. In terms of pocket infection management, 62% of the respondents applied complete system removal as an initial step. Diagnostic pocket needle aspiration and pocket surgical debridement were reported by 15.8% and 11.8% of centres, respectively.
Conclusion: Clinical practices for prevention and management of CIED do not fully comply with current recommendations and demonstrate considerable regional disparities. Further education and programmes for improved implementation of guidelines are mandatory.
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