Treatment Guidelines from The Medical Letter
Antimicrobial Prophylaxis for Surgery
The full article is available to subscribers Subscriber Login   
Revised 10/6/10: Table 1: Footnote 14 was added to the Gastrointestinal/Colorectal section and a second sentence was added to footnote 5.

Antimicrobial Prophylaxis for Surgery Antimicrobial prophylaxis can decrease the incidence of infection, particularly surgical site infection, after certain procedures. Recommendations for prevention of surgical site infection are listed in Table 1. Antimicrobial prophylaxis for dental procedures to prevent endocarditis is discussed in The Medical Letter 2007; 49:99.


An effective prophylactic regimen should be directed against the most likely infecting organisms, but need not eradicate every potential pathogen. For most procedures, the first-generation cephalosporin cefazolin (Ancef, and others), which is active against many staphylococci and streptococci, remains effective. For procedures that might involve exposure to bowel anaerobes, including Bacteroides fragilis, the ... more      

The Medical Letter is a subscriber-funded nonprofit organization that publishes critical appraisals of new prescription drugs and comparative reviews of drugs for common diseases.

Would you like to read the rest of this article?  Gain access below.

Subscriptions to The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics include:
  • Print version published and mailed biweekly (26 issues/year)
  • Immediate Online access to current issue and archives from 1988 to the present
  • Mobile access to our mobile site and free apps for iOS, Android and Kindle
  • FREE online per issue CME/CE
Free trial offer
3 Free Issues of The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics mailed to your home or office PLUS online access.
Try a Free Trial Subscription
Purchase this article:
Title: Antimicrobial Prophylaxis for Surgery
Article code: 82a
 Electronic, downloadable article - $25