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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Updated Guideline Now Include a Recommendation for Triclosan-Coated Sutures

Ethicon Plus Sutures are the only globally available sutures coated with triclosan that inhibit bacteria from colonizing the suture.

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Somerville, NJ – May 10, 2017 – Ethicon*, a trusted leader in suture technology, supports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) updated Guideline for the Prevention of Surgical Site Infection, 2017. Recently revised, the CDC guideline now includes a recommendation that health care professionals “consider the use of triclosan-coated sutures for the prevention of SSI [surgical site infection].” The guideline appeared in the May 3 edition of JAMA Surgery online.

This announcement adds to the growing support from other prestigious organizations, including the World Health Organization, the American College of Surgeons and the Surgical Infection Society, on the positive impact of triclosan-coated sutures in reducing the risk for SSI.

Suture selection provides an important opportunity to address a key risk factor for infection – bacterial colonization of the suture. Ethicon Plus Sutures are the only globally available sutures coated with triclosan that inhibit bacteria commonly associated with SSIs (including S. aureus, S. epidermidis, MRSA, MRSE, E. coli, and K. pneumoniae.[i],[ii],[iii]) from colonizing the suture. Ethicon first innovated the triclosan-coated suture with the introduction of Coated VICRYL® Plus Antibacterial (polyglactin 910) suture in 2003.

“Triclosan-coated sutures should be considered as part of an institution’s comprehensive evidence-based approach to reducing the risk of SSIs,” said Charles Edmiston, PhD**, Emeritus Professor of Surgery & Former Hospital Epidemiologist at Froedtert Hospital - Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. “Ethicon Plus Sutures play an important role in reducing hospital-acquired infections, and with health care costs increasingly rising, it’s now more important than ever to address the risk factors associated with SSIs.”

Surgical Site Infections are among the most common healthcare-associated infections (HAI) worldwide; they increase morbidity and mortality in surgical patients and represent an economic burden to healthcare systems.[iv] In fact, SSIs have been reported as the most common type of HAI in the U.S.,[v] occurring in up to 3% of all hospitalized patients. [vi]

“Ethicon, with a 60-year legacy of innovation in surgical sutures, fully supports the CDC’s updated guideline, which demonstrates their commitment to improving the quality of patient care and will ultimately help save many lives,” said Liza Ovington, Franchise Medical Director for Ethicon.

Ethicon Plus Sutures have been shown in vitro to inhibit bacterial colonization of the suture for seven days or more, as well as bacterial growth in a zone around the suture.iii By inhibiting bacterial colonization of the suture by pathogens commonly associated with SSIs, a key risk factor for infection is addressed. Numerous peer reviewed, randomized clinical trials, as well as prospectively planned meta-analyses of these trials, support a growing body of evidence that antibacterial sutures are an important tool in the fight against surgical site infections.

To learn more about Ethicon Plus Sutures, visit

About Ethicon
From creating the first sutures to revolutionizing surgery with minimally invasive procedures, Ethicon, part of the Johnson & Johnson Medical Devices Companies, has made significant contributions to surgery for more than 60 years. Our continuing dedication to Shape the Future of Surgery is built on our commitment to help address the world’s most pressing health care issues, and improve and save more lives. Through Ethicon’s surgical technologies and solutions including sutures, staplers, energy devices, trocars and hemostats and our commitment to treating serious medical conditions like obesity and cancer worldwide, we deliver innovation to make a life-changing impact. Learn more at, and follow us on Twitter @Ethicon.

*Ethicon represents the products and services of Ethicon, Inc., Ethicon Endo-Surgery, LLC and certain of their affiliates. Ethicon, Inc. is the legal manufacturer of Plus Antibacterial Sutures.

**Charles Edmiston is a paid consultant of Ethicon.


[i] Ming X, Rothenburger S, Nichols MM. In vivo and in vitro antibacterial efficacy of PDS Plus (polidioxanone with triclosan) suture. Surg Infect. 2008;9(4):451-457.
[ii] Ming X, Rothenburger S, Yang D. In vitro antibacterial efficacy of Monocryl Plus Antibacterial Suture (poligelcaprone 25 with triclosan). Surg Infect. 2007;8(2):201-207.
[iii] Rothenburger S, Spangler D, Bhende S, Burkley D. In vitro antimicrobial evaluation of coated Vicryl Plus Antibacterial Suture (coated polyglactin 910 with triclosan) using zone of inhibition assays. Surg Infect. 2002;3(suppl):79-87.
[iv] Wang ZX, Jiang CP, Cao Y, Ding YT. Systematic review and meta-analysis of triclosan-coated sutures for the inhibition of surgical-site infection. Br J Surg. 2013;100(4):465-473.
[v] Magill, S.S., et al., “Prevalence of healthcare-associated infections in acute care hospitals in Jacksonville, Florida”. Infection Control Hospital Epidemiology, 33(3):(2012): 283-91. Accessed April 6, 2016 at
[vi] FAQs About Surgical Site Infections. Accessed April 6, 2016:

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Ashley Carter


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