Vacuum-assisted abdominal closure in surgical emergency: A single institution experience treating a cohort with a prevalence of faecal peritonitis

Dmitrijs Skicko, Baiba Gabrāne, Guntars Pupelis, Oļegs Šuba, Haralds Plaudis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Vacuum-assisted abdominal closure (VAAC) has evolved as a promising method for treatment of emergent surgical patients. The aim of the study was an assessment of the complication rate and outcomes following routine application of VAAC in a cohort of patients suffering predominantly with peritonitis of the lower gastrointestinal tract (GIT) origin. The prospectively collected data was analysed retrospectively, including demographic data, aetiological factors, comorbid conditions and severity of the disease. The indications for VAAC included complicated intra-abdominal infection, purulent peritonitis with sepsis and/or risk of increased intra-abdominal pressure. In total, 130 patients were managed with VAAC. The median age was 63.5 years, with a predominance of male patients (61.5%). Systemic inflammatory response was present in 68.5%, the median C-reactive protein (CRP) was 239.58 mg/l, Procalcitonin (PCT) level 7.02 ng/ml, and lactate 1.84 mmol/l before intervention. The median Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) score was 4 and the Mannheim Peritonitis Index was 26. Sepsis developed in 87.0% of patients, and 43.8% had septic shock. VAAC was applied in 58.5% due to a perforation of the lower GIT, in 26.1% due to perforation of the upper GIT, and in 15.4% for other reasons. A median of two (interquartile range, IQR 1-3) VAAC system changes were performed in a period of 7 (IQR 4-11) days. In 88.6% of cases, multiple types of microorganisms were present. The application of VAAC resulted in a significant decrease of the postoperative SOFA score, and CRP, PCT and lactate levels (p < 0.001). The complications included a “frozen abdomen”, enterocutaneous fistula, intraabdominal abscess and bleeding in 7.7%, 5.4% and 6.0% cases, respectively. Primary abdominal closure was accomplished in 76.2%, resulting in a 23.1% mortality rate. VAAC was found to be safe in the treatment of abdominal sepsis including in patients with faecal peritonitis. Complete abdominal closure can be achieved in the majority of patients resulting in a lower mortality rate.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)126-135
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of the Latvian Academy of Sciences, Section B: Natural, Exact, and Applied Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Complicated intra-abdominal infection
  • Intra-abdominal hypertension
  • Sepsis

Field of Science*

  • 3.2 Clinical medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


Dive into the research topics of 'Vacuum-assisted abdominal closure in surgical emergency: A single institution experience treating a cohort with a prevalence of faecal peritonitis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this