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Table 1 Incision classification

From: Application of antimicrobial drugs in perioperative surgical incision

Classification Definition
Class I
 Clean incisions An uninfected surgical incision in which no inflammation is encountered and the respiratory, alimentary, genital, or uninfected urinary tracts are not entered. Surgical wound incisions that are made after nonpenetrating trauma should be included in this category if they meet the criteria
Class II
 Clean-contaminated incisions A surgical incision in which the respiratory, alimentary, genital, or urinary tracts are entered under controlled conditions and without unusual contamination. Specifically, surgical procedures involving the biliary tract, appendix, vagina, and oropharynx are included in this category, provided no evidence of infection is encountered
Class III
 Contaminated incisions Open, fresh, accidental incisions. In addition, surgical procedures in which a major break in sterile technique occurs (e.g., open cardiac massage) or there is gross spillage from the gastrointestinal tract and incisions in which acute, nonpurulent inflammation is encountered are included in this category
Class IV
 Dirty/infected incisions Old traumatic incisions with retained or devitalized tissue and those that involve existing clinical infection or perforated viscera
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