Molecular Diagnosis of SSTIs May Yield Better Clinical Outcomes

Molecular diagnostics such as polymerase chain reaction (PCR)–based tests provide faster, more complete results than traditional culture-based tests, and their use may improve outcomes for patients with chronic wounds and skin and soft tissue infections (SSTIs), according to new findings presented at the 21st Annual MAD-ID Meeting held May 9 to 12 in Orlando, Florida.

About 6.5 million individuals were afflicted with chronic wounds and SSTIs in the United States in 2009.1 The costs of treating associated complications reached upward of $25 billion at that time. A more recent study estimated that annual Medicare spending for all wound types ranged from $28.1 billion to a whopping $96.8 billion in 2014.2

“These costs could potentially be mitigated with the use of rapid diagnostics that have the capability to better identify wound pathogens and thus allow clinicians to provide better clinical care through targeted antimicrobial therapy,” said Tanya Moreno, PhD, vice president of research and development at Millennium Health, citing a Mayo Clinic Proceedings article on the hospitalists’ view of treating SSTIs … read more