Tracking Wound Infection With Smartphone Technology

2016-03-11 03:23:24 | BioPortfolio


This study aims to evaluate if a smartphone-delivered questionnaire can help assess for wound infections, and if this improves access to care and results in earlier treatment. Participants will be randomised to one of two groups. The intervention group will receive the smartphone-delivered questionnaire, to access if they have concerns about their wound. The trial period is 30 days.


Surgical site infection (SSI) is defined by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an infection in the skin and soft tissues of a surgical wound, within 30 days of the operation. It is a common problem, and complicates 2-10% of general surgery operations. The majority of cases are diagnosed outside of hospital and can be treated with oral antibiotics.

Interest in the use of technology in medicine is increasing, with the potential that more advanced technology will help facilitate communication between clinicians and patients, aid in the assessment of patients, and improve clinical decision making. Over two-thirds of people now own smartphones, and regularly use them to access the internet. The investigators wish to use a smartphone delivered questionnaire to help assess SSI and see if this improves access to care and time to treatment.

The investigators will be recruiting emergency surgery patients with smartphones at the Royal Infirmary and Western General Hospitals in Edinburgh.

Participants will be divided into two groups. One group will receive the online questionnaire, if they are concerned about their wound, they can use the questionnaire to answer a series of questions. If their answers suggest SSI, a clinician will contact them to advise further assessment and treatment. The participants will also be asked to answer the questionnaire three times during the trial (to collect responses from those without symptoms), and upload photos of their wounds to a secure database.

The second group of participants will receive normal post-operative care.

After 30 days, participants will have a follow-up consultation, to determine if they have had a wound infection (this can be via telephone or face-to-face, according to participant preference). They will also answer questions about their experience of the study, and use of services.

Study Design

Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Open Label, Primary Purpose: Diagnostic


Surgical Site Infection


Wound Questionnaire


Royal Infirmary Edinburgh
United Kingdom
EH16 4SA


Not yet recruiting


University of Edinburgh

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2016-03-11T03:23:24-0500

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

Infection occurring at the site of a surgical incision.

Pathologic process consisting of a partial or complete disruption of the layers of a surgical wound.

Invasion of the site of trauma by pathogenic microorganisms.

Intraocular infection caused mainly by pus-producing bacteria and rarely by fungi. The infection may be caused by an injury or surgical wound (exogenous) or by endogenous septic emboli in such diseases as bacterial endocarditis or meningococcemia.

The application of a vacuum across the surface of a wound through a foam dressing cut to fit the wound. This removes wound exudates, reduces build-up of inflammatory mediators, and increases the flow of nutrients to the wound thus promoting healing.

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