Mediastinitis risk factors

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Editor-In-Chief: C. Michael Gibson, M.S., M.D. [1] Associate Editor(s)-in-Chief: Anthony Gallo, B.S. [2]


The most potent risk factor for mediastinitis is recent chest surgery. Other risk factors include recent endoscopy, smoking, and obesity.

Risk Factors

Common risk factors in the development of mediastinitis include:[1][2][3][4][5]


  1. Abboud CS, Wey SB, Baltar VT (2004). "Risk factors for mediastinitis after cardiac surgery". Ann Thorac Surg. 77 (2): 676–83. doi:10.1016/S0003-4975(03)01523-6. PMID 14759458.
  2. Risk factors for mediastinitis after cardiac surgery – a retrospective analysis of 1700 patients. Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery (2007). Accessed on September 21, 2015
  3. Lin YY, Hsu CW, Chu SJ, Chen SC, Tsai SH (2007). "Rapidly propagating descending necrotizing mediastinitis as a consequence of intravenous drug use". Am J Med Sci. 334 (6): 499–502. doi:10.1097/MAJ.0b013e3180a5e911. PMID 18091375.
  4. Roccia F, Pecorari GC, Oliaro A, Passet E, Rossi P, Nadalin J; et al. (2007). "Ten years of descending necrotizing mediastinitis: management of 23 cases". J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 65 (9): 1716–24. doi:10.1016/j.joms.2006.10.060. PMID 17719388.
  5. Guide for the Prevention of Mediastinitis Surgical Site Infections Following Cardiac Surgery. (2008) Accessed on September 21, 2015

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