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Real-world effectiveness of infection prevention interventions for reducing procedure-related cardiac device infections: Insights from the veterans affairs clinical assessment reporting and tracking program

  • Archana Asundi (a1), Maggie Stanislawski (a2) (a3) (a4), Payal Mehta (a5), Anna E. Baron (a3), Hillary J. Mull (a6), P. Michael Ho (a2) (a4) (a7), Peter J. Zimetbaum (a8) (a9), Kalpana Gupta (a5) (a6) (a10) and Westyn Branch-Elliman (a5) (a6) (a9)...



To measure the association between receipt of specific infection prevention interventions and procedure-related cardiac implantable electronic device (CIED) infections.


Retrospective cohort with manually reviewed infection status.


Setting: National, multicenter Veterans Health Administration (VA) cohort.


Sampling of procedures entered into the VA Clinical Assessment Reporting and Tracking-Electrophysiology (CART-EP) database from fiscal years 2008 through 2015.


A sample of procedures entered into the CART-EP database underwent manual review for occurrence of CIED infection and other clinical/procedural variables. The primary outcome was 6-month incidence of CIED infection. Measures of association were calculated using multivariable generalized estimating equations logistic regression.


We identified 101 procedure-related CIED infections among 2,098 procedures (4.8% of reviewed sample). Factors associated with increased odds of infections included (1) wound complications (adjusted odds ratio [aOR], 8.74; 95% confidence interval [CI], 3.16–24.20), (2) revisions including generator changes (aOR, 2.4; 95% CI, 1.59–3.63), (3) an elevated international normalized ratio (INR) >1.5 (aOR, 1.56; 95% CI, 1.12–2.18), and (4) methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus colonization (aOR, 9.56; 95% CI, 1.55–27.77). Clinically effective prevention interventions included preprocedural skin cleaning with chlorhexidine versus other topical agents (aOR, 0.41; 95% CI, 0.22–0.76) and receipt of β-lactam antimicrobial prophylaxis versus vancomycin (aOR, 0.60; 95% CI, 0.37–0.96). The use of mesh pockets and continuation of antimicrobial prophylaxis after skin closure were not associated with reduced infection risk.


These findings regarding the real-world clinical effectiveness of different prevention strategies can be applied to the development of evidence-based protocols and infection prevention guidelines specific to the electrophysiology laboratory.


Corresponding author

Author for correspondence: Westyn Branch-Elliman, Email:


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PREVIOUS PRESENTATION: This work was presented as a poster abstract (no. 2126) at IDWeek 2018, on October 6, 2018, in San Francisco, California.



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