Velvet pads have been evaluated in an experimental, laboratory model, simulating intraoperative sampling of Staphylococcus epidermis, Escherichia coli and Bacteroides fragilis. After sampling, the pad was placed in a transport medium and kept in an anaerobic atmosphere, before being shaken and rinsed, followed by anaerobic and aerobic culture. This technique permitted quantitatively high recoveries of the test bacteria. Velvet pad sampling could be a measure to determine the density of aerobic and anaerobic bacteria during operation in an effort to predict the risk of postoperative wound sepsis.
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