Collections of serous fluid surrounding prosthetic grafts can be caused by infection or transudation of serum, and making the distinction is often troublesome. Bergamini and his colleagues developed a dog model of low-grade prosthetic graft contamination with Staphylococcus epidermatis. All animals developed evidence of graft infection, and 13 of 18 dogs developed a fluid- filled perigraft cyst. Signs of systemic infection, however, were present in only 1 animal, and the Staphylococcus epidermatis study strain was isolated from the tissue surrounding the graft in only 1 dog. The authors had to disrupt the biofilm to achieve positive cultures in 14 of 18 animals. This animal model seemed to conform to clinical experience and placed great emphasis on the role of indolent infections in the pathogenesis of perigraft fluid collection. It is equally clear that perigraft fluid collections may result from transudation of fluid through the prosthetic surfaces, which act similar to a dialysis membrane under certain circumstances. Noninfectious seromas are characterized generally by the accumulation of clear serous fluid with a protein and glucose content of serum and the lack of acute inflammatory cells when the sediment is examined. The need to distinguish between these 2 forms of fluid accumulation became important in the treatment of a 62-year-old man who was seen 2 1/4 years after the repair of an abdominal aortic aneurysm with an aortobiiliac stretch polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) prosthesis. There was no evidence of infection, and there was a 12 cm cystic mass surrounding a patent PTFE prosthesis.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine