There are millions of microorganisms living on the skin, in the body and in the environment; they include bacteria, viruses and fungi. Most microorganisms cause no harm, but in the operating theatre during an open surgery, preventative measures are taken to avoid them at all costs.

Microorganisms from the skin or environment can enter the body through the surgical wound during or after the operation. The microorganisms can multiply and cause an infection known as a surgical site infection (SSI) or a surgical wound infection.1 According to a study done by the NHS in England in 2015 and 2016, 1,632 out of 136,872 procedures resulted in an SSI.2


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