Strategies to reduce external ventricular drain–related infections: a multicenter retrospective study


Journal of Neurosurgery, Ahead of Print.
OBJECTIVEVarious strategies have been proposed to reduce the incidence of external ventricular drain (EVD)–related infections. The authors retrospectively studied the impact of EVD care management on EVD-related infections at 3 French university hospital intensive care units.METHODSBetween 2010 and 2014, 462 consecutive adult patients with no evidence of a preexisting CSF infection received EVDs as part of their care at one of the following sites: Grenoble (221 patients), Saint-Etienne (130 patients), and Marseille (111 patients). Written protocols describing the EVD placement procedure, management, and removal were implemented at the 3 sites. Daily CSF sampling and intraventricular administration of antibiotics prior to EVD removal were performed at the Grenoble site only. EVD-related infection was considered for any confirmed ventriculostomy-related infection (VRI) and ventriculitis. VRI was defined as one or more positive CSF cultures or Gram stain with CSF pleocytosis and biochemical abnormalities. Ventriculitis was defined as CSF pleocytosis and biochemical abnormalities with degradation of neurological status and fever.RESULTSA total of 6945 EVD days were observed in the entire population. In the Grenoble cohort, the mean cumulative incidence of EVD-related infections was significantly lower than that in the 2 other cohorts: 1.4% (95% CI 0.0%–2.9%) versus 9.2% (95% CI 4.2%–14.2%) and 7.2% (95% CI 2.4%–12.0%) at Saint-Etienne and Marseille, respectively (p < 0.01). Accounting for the duration of external ventricular drainage at each site, the risk for EVD-related CSF infections was significantly higher at Saint-Etienne and Marseille than at Grenoble, with ORs of 15.9 (95% CI 3.6–71.4, p < 0.001) and 10.0 (95% CI 2.2–45.5, p = 0.003), respectively.CONCLUSIONSThese findings indicate that it is possible to attain a low incidence of EVD-related infections, provided that an EVD care bundle, which can include routine daily CSF sampling, is implemented and strongly adhered to.

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