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Research Study Finds Silverlon Antimicrobial Dressing Significantly Reduces Postoperative Infection Rate Following Total Hip and Knee Arthroplasty

October 26, 2018

Independent study conducted by Harvard orthopaedic group showed a reduction of superficial and deep prosthetic joint infections (PJI) following total joint replacement

Geneva, Ill. (March 1, 2018) — An independent clinical study conducted by the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Harvard Combined Orthopaedic Residency Program has found that the use of Silverlon® antimicrobial dressings significantly reduces the rate of prosthetic joint infections (PJI) — including both superficial and deep infections — compared to standard dressings. The study, Use of Silver Nylon Dressing Following Total Hip and Knee Arthroplasty Decreases the Postoperative Infection Rate,” was published in the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeon Global Research & Review.

“This important research demonstrates in a large group of total joint-replacement patients, surgical site infections can be significantly reduced by the simple use of a silver-nylon dressing postoperatively,” said David Barillo, M.D. FACS, FCCM, wound specialist, burn surgeon and silver researcher. “In total joint replacement, protecting the surgical wound is critical. PJI is devastating when it occurs, causing increased patient suffering as well as substantial economic burden associated with prolonged antibiotic use, repeat surgical procedures, and extended hospital readmissions.”

The case-control study of primary TKR and THR surgery compared the incidence of superficial and deep PJI in patients who received a silver nylon dressing (Silverlon – the study group) with patients who received a standard dressing (Xeroform and gauze – the control group). The study included a total of 834 patients with 309 consecutive total joint replacement (TJR) cases in the study group and 525 consecutive TJR cases in the control group. The same two surgeons performed all surgeries and study patients were followed for twelve months to identify PJI. Infection data in the control group were extracted retrospectively based on chart review.

Study findings included:

Ø The incidence of infection was significantly lower (p = 0.012) in the Silverlon study group (3.9%) compared with the control group (8.4%). This result represents a 54% reduction in the rate of infection with Silverlon use.

Ø No deep PJIs occurred in the Silverlon study group; there were 12 deep PJIs (2.3%) in the control group.

Ø Odds of any infection were significantly less in the Silverlon study group compared with the control group (OR, 0.382; 95% CI, 0.250-0.583; P < 0.0001)

Ø No adverse reactions to the silver dressing were reported.

As the number of joint replacements performed in the U.S. continues to rise, so does the number of patients affected by prosthetic joint infection. PJI is the most common cause of failure of total knee replacement (TKR) surgery and the third most common cause of failure following total hip replacement (THR) surgery. According to the study publication, total joint replacement procedures in the U.S. have resulted in 5,310 to 21,240 infections per year, and the financial impact of PJI in the U.S. was $566 million in 2009 and is projected to increase to $1.62 billion in 2020.

“Silverlon has been included in numerous studies that have demonstrated that silver-nylon dressings can offer advantages over standard gauze, helping to improve patient care,” said Raul Brizuela, president and CEO of Argentum Medical. “We are pleased the additional data from Harvard’s independent research help demonstrate the benefits of Silverlon in the protection of surgical wounds to improve outcomes for orthopaedic patients.”

“Other studies have demonstrated the effectiveness of silver-nylon dressings in cardiothoracic, colorectal and lumbar-spine surgery. Adding the present study to what we already know, use of silver-nylon dressings should help improve the standard of care for joint replacement and other orthopedic surgery procedures,” added Dr. Barillo.

About Silverlon

Silverlon wound dressings have a permanently plated metallic surface, which provides the antimicrobial benefits of silver in the dressing without staining the skin and without increasing bioburden. Silverlon was originally developed for the U.S. military, where it is still extensively used for management of burn and blast injuries. Silverlon dressings are used today by surgeons and other healthcare professionals around the world on surgical wounds, in negative pressure wound therapy, on chronic wounds, burns, skin grafts, and IV and catheter-related wounds.

Silverlon Island Wound Dressings and Silverlon Wound Pad Dressings are indicated for the management of infected wounds, as the silver in the dressing provides an antimicrobial barrier that may be helpful in managing these wounds. In addition, the moist wound healing environment and control of wound bacteria within the Silverlon Island Wound Dressing and Silverlon Wound Pad Dressing may help reduce the risk of wound infection and support the body's healing process. Silverlon Island Wound Dressings and Silverlon Wound Pad Dressing’s non-adherent wound contact layer reduces pain during dressing changes and evaporation of moisture in the dressing may soothe the wound. For more information and complete indications for use, visit http://www.silverlon.com.

About Argentum Medical

Argentum Medical pioneered the use of silver-plated nylon. Specializing in the development of innovative products made from silver-plated nylon, the company continues to explore new applications and markets for its Silverlon® technology in keeping with its corporate mission to improve clinical outcomes.


Please note that this study may involve findings that exceed the claims currently cleared by the FDA for the product. Argentum Medical, LLC is not intending to make performance claims about its product. The intent is to disseminate the scientific literature on these products. We encourage you to read this study to understand the strengths and limitations of the data. For some claims, Argentum is seeking to broaden the indications with the FDA in the future using data, such as these studies, to provide the substantiation.

This study along with other independent, peer-reviewed, published clinical studies suggest Silverlon Dressings can be an important element in wound care, and that the control of wound bacteria within the dressing may help reduce the risk of infection. A full bibliography of studies can be found at www.silverlon.com.

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