In 2009, the American Academy Of Orthopedic Surgeons recommended lifelong prophylaxis after orthopedic total joint replacement (TJR) before these patients undergo dental, aerodigestive, genitourinary (GU), and gastrointestinal (GI) procedures. Because oral and maxillofacial surgeons worldwide are implanting alloplastic total temporomandibular joint replacements (TMJ TJRs), it appeared reasonable to survey these surgeons to obtain data that might shed some light, not only on this issue, but also to obtain some data to begin to develop preliminary guidelines for the peri- and postoperative use of antibiotics for TMJ TJR using these results and the orthopedic data.
A total of 35 surgeons worldwide, members of either the TMJ Concepts or Biomet Microfixation online networks were e-mailed a standard questionnaire surveying their perioperative, postoperative, and prophylactic use of antibiotics for their TMJ TJR cases.
Of the 35 surgeons, 26 (74.2%) from 8 different countries responded. A total of 2,476 cases (3,368 joints) were retrospectively surveyed. Of the responding surgeons, 96.2% used, in order of frequency, cefazolin, clindamycin, cephalosporin, or penicillin-based antibiotics in the perioperative period and continued their use for a mean of 7 days (range 5 to 14) postoperatively. Also, 46.2% soaked the TJR components either in the perioperative antibiotic or in vancomycin, poviodine, gentamycin, or peroxide before implantation. In addition, 61.5% irrigated the wounds after device implantation with bacitracin, vancomycin, poviodine, peroxide, or the perioperative antibiotic. These surgeons reported that 51 joints (1.51%) had become infected within a mean of 6 months (range 2 weeks to 12 years) postoperatively. A total of 32 devices (0.95%) required removal and/or replacement. In cases in which the organisms were isolated, the organisms commonly associated with biofilm infection of TJR devices, Staphylococcus aureus, S epidermidis, Peptostreptococcus, and Pseudamonas aeruginosa, were cultured. In only 1 joint (0.003%) was there a suggestion of an association with an invasive dental/aerodigestive, GU/GI procedure. Regarding prophylaxis after TMJ TJRs and before dental/aerodigestive, GU, or GI procedures, 53.8% of the respondents reported that they provided prophylaxis. Of these, 1 recommended doing this for 6 months and 4 for 2 years, such as has been the American Dental Association/American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommendation since 2003; and 9 reported they believe these TMJ TJR patients should have lifetime antibiotic prophylaxis before invasive dental/aerodigestive, GU, or GI procedures.
The evidence provided from the present small study survey and a review of the orthopedic data could provide the opportunity to develop guidelines for the preoperative, intraoperative, and postoperative antibiotic management for TMJ TJRs and spur additional research into this important area of patient management.