Cardiac implantable electronic devices (CIEDs) are commonly used to treat cardiac arrhythmias and prevent sudden cardiac death. Complications of CIED therapy include component malfunction, lead dislodgement, skin erosion and infection. Infection can result in significant morbidity and even mortality. The recommended treatment of CIED skin erosion and infection is urgent complete device extraction. When this is infeasible due to patient or resource factors, an attempt could be made to salvage the exposed or infected CIED system by debridement of all the infected necrotic tissues and irrigation of the pocket and contaminated hardware with anti-septic/antibiotic solutions. Taurolidine, when dissolved in an aqueous solution, produces a broad spectrum of antimicrobial actions and may be used as a novel irrigation agent during CIED salvage.
This report describes the first use of a taurolidine-containing solution for pocket irrigation and in situ hardware sterilisation that resulted in the successful salvage of a CIED infected with multi-resistant Staphylococcus epidermidis.
A taurolidine-containing antimicrobial solution can be a safe and effective alternative to traditional antiseptic/antibiotic solutions for pocket irrigation and in situ hardware sterilisation during CIED salvage, and may produce better clinical outcomes by some unique mechanisms of action such as inhibition of biofilm formation and neutralisation of endotoxins, with little risk of inducing and encountering resistance.