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additional care provider, external ventricular drain, neurosurgical nursing, ventriculostomy-related infection



  1. Fang, Wenchao
  2. Wei, Anqi
  3. Zhu, Yuanrun
  4. You, Wendong
  5. Wang, Hao
  6. Wen, Liang
  7. Yang, Xiaofeng


ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: External ventricular drains (EVDs) are commonly used in neurosurgery. Preventing EVD-related infections is important, and nursing plays a significant role in infection control. However, because of the limited number of neurosurgical nurses and heavy workload in developing countries, well-trained patient care technicians (PCTs) might be able to assist nurses under this circumstance. METHODS: This study retrospectively screened patients who underwent EVD procedures in our medical center from January 2012 to June 2018. Clinical characteristics including EVD-related infection rates of patients with or without PCTs were compared. RESULTS: We analyzed 234 patients in total. There were 26 EVD infection cases, and the overall infection rate was 11.1%. There were 122 patients who were given additional care by PCTs. They were elder (58.1 +/- 13.1 vs 49.9 +/- 17.0 years old, P < .001) and had lower level preoperational Glasgow Coma Scale (7.04 +/- 3.66 vs 13.5 +/- 2.53, P < .001) and higher intubation rate (28.7% vs 3.6%, P < .001) than those without PCTs. They also had a longer drainage duration (10.3 +/- 4.97 vs 8.01 +/- 4.35, P < .001) as well as more cerebrospinal fluid sampling times (2.45 +/- 2.00 vs 1.75 +/- 1.83, P = .006) and were kept at artificial airway status for a longer duration (10.1 +/- 18.7 vs 1.93 +/- 7.86, P < .001). External ventricular drain-related infection rates were similar between 2 groups (11.5% vs 10.7%, P = .853). CONCLUSION: Patient care technicians with proper training are beneficial to the prevention of EVD-related infection as a measure of improving staffing adequacy.