Deviprasad Sulli1, Manjula S. Rao2
Peritonitis is a fairly common emergency condition treated by general surgeons. Secondary peritonitis due to hollow viscous perforation, by far is the most common cause. Treatment mainstay is laparotomy, peritoneal lavage and closure of perforation. Different types of fluids like warm saline, distilled water, antibiotics like metronidazole, gentamycin, etc. have been used for lavage and abundant literature is available on their use.
In this study, patients who were operated for peritonitis were randomly allotted into saline and metronidazole lavage group. Postoperative complications like wound infection, intra-abdominal abscess, sepsis, faecal fistula and death were noted.
The saline lavage group had 40% incidence of wound infection, 12% intra-abdominal abscess, 28% sepsis, 6% faecal fistula and 8% mortality. Metronidazole lavage group had 26% wound infection, 10% intra-abdominal abscess, 18% sepsis, 6% faecal fistula and 10% mortality.
There is no statistically significant difference in the outcome between the saline group and the metronidazole group.