Contaminated open fracture and crush injury: A murine model

Academic Article


  • Modern warfare has caused a large number of severe extremity injuries, many of which become infected. In more recent conflicts, a pattern of co-infection with Acinetobacter baumannii and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus has emerged. We attempted to recreate this pattern in an animal model to evaluate the role of vascularity in contaminated open fractures. Historically, it has been observed that infected bones frequently appear hypovascular, but vascularity in association with bone infection has not been examined in animal models. Adult rats underwent femur fracture and muscle crush injury followed by stabilization and bacterial contamination with A. baumannii complex and methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Vascularity and perfusion were assessed by microCT angiography and SPECT scanning, respectively, at 1, 2 and 4 weeks after injury. Quantitative bacterial cultures were also obtained. Multi-bacterial infections were successfully created, with methicillin-resistant S. aureus predominating. There was overall increase in blood flow to injured limbs that was markedly greater in bacteria-inoculated limbs. Vessel volume was greater in the infected group. Quadriceps atrophy was seen in both groups, but was greater in the infected group. In this animal model, infected open fractures had greater perfusion and vascularity than non-infected limbs.
  • Published In

  • Bone Research  Journal
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Gilbert SR; Camara J; Camara R; Duffy L; Waites K; Kim H; Zinn K
  • Volume

  • 3