Genital Fournier's gangrene: Experience with 38 patients

Mohamed J. Hejase, Jose E. Simonin, Richard Bihrle, Christopher L. Coogan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

151 Scopus citations


Objectives. Fournier's gangrene (FG) is an extensive fulminant infection of the genitals, perineum, or the abdominal wall. We report our experience with the management of this difficult infectious disease. Methods. Thirty- eight patients were admitted with the diagnosis of FG between May 1993 and May 1995. All patients were treated with broad-spectrum triple antimicrobial therapy, broad debridement, exhaustive cleaning, and application of unprocessed honey dressings. Patients then underwent split-thickness skin grafts or delayed closure as needed. Results. Patient ages ranged between 33 and 86 years (mean, 54) with a mean hospital stay of 17 days (range, 1 to 45). Sixty-six percent of the patients were diabetic, 16% had previous orchiepididymitis, and 5% had scrotal and urethral trauma. All the patients underwent surgical debridement and application of unprocessed honey to the wound. Cystostomy was performed in 60% of the patients and 21% underwent orchiectomy of the affected side. Free skin grafts were applied to 6 patients (16%) and the remaining wounds, once clean, were approximated. One patient died as a result of severe metabolic acidosis and sepsis. Conclusions. The management of this infectious entity should be aggressive. Patients with FG need extensive debridement and cystostomy or colostomy when necessary. Broad- spectrum triple antimicrobial regimen and aggressive debridement are mandatory. Topical application of unprocessed honey is beneficial to the healing process. A minority of patients require split-thickness skin grafts on denuded areas.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)734-739
Number of pages6
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology

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