Evaluation of risk factors and severity of a life threatening surgical emergency: Fournier's gangrene (a report of 15 cases) - Abstract

Department of General Surgery, Celal Bayar University, School of Medicine, Manisa, Türkiye.


Fournier's gangrene is a rare, rapidly progressive, necrotising fasciitis of the external genitalia and perineum with high morbidity and mortality.

15 patients with Fournier's gangrene were enrolled. Gender, age, aetiology, predisposing factors, symptomatology, associated diseases, hospital stay, FGSI, and body surface area were analysed.

Ten males and five females were enrolled in the study. The mean age was 54 years (range 23-81). E. coli and acinetobacter were the common organisms cultured. All patients were treated with a common approach of resuscitation, broad-spectrum antibiotics, and wide surgical excision. Common predisposing factors included diabetes mellitus (73.3%), poor personal hygiene (60%), obesity (33.3%), psychosis (20%) and decubitus ulcers (13.2%). Whereas five (33.3%) patients developed synergistic gangrene of the scrotum secondary to anorectal disease, five (33.3%) had a urological source of infection. Mean BSA and FSGI scores were 15.93 +/- 3.13 and 6.02 +/- 0.95, respectively. Serum glucose > 140 mg/dl, the existence of septic shock on admission, the spread of gangrene to the perineum and abdominal wall (Groups C and D), BSA > or = 24 cm2, a cutaneous source of infection and FGSI scores > or = 7 were factors affecting mortality rates with statistical significance (p < 0.05). There was a direct correlation between the culture of mixed type micro-organisms and the cutaneous source of infection (p < 0.05). The extent of gangrene correlated with higher FGSI scores (> or = 7) (p < 0.05). Mortality and morbidity rates were as 20% (n = 3) and 60% (n = 9).

Aggressive surgical debridement and combined antibiotherapy are essential in the management of Fournier's gangrene. FGSI and BSA are useful to assess the severity and prognosis of the disease.

Written by:
Kara E, Müezzinoğlu T, Temeltas G, Dinçer L, Kaya Y, Sakarya A, Coskun T.   Are you the author?

Reference: Acta Chir Belg. 2009 Mar-Apr;109(2):191-7.

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 19499680

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