Published online Sep 7, 2009. doi: 10.3748/wjg.15.4122
Revised: May 21, 2009
Accepted: May 28, 2009
Published online: September 7, 2009
Perioperative hyperglycemia in critically ill surgery patients increases the risk of postoperative infection (POI), which is a common, and often costly, surgical complication. Hyperglycemia is associated with abnormalities in leukocyte function, including granulocyte adherence, impaired phagocytosis, delayed chemotaxis, and depressed bactericidal capacity. These leukocyte deficiencies are the cause of infection and improve with tight glycemic control, which leads to fewer POIs in critically ill surgical patients. Tight glycemic control, such as intensive insulin therapy, has a risk of hypoglycemia. In addition, the optimal targeted blood glucose range to reduce POI remains unknown. Since 2006, we have investigated tight perioperative blood glucose control using a closed-loop artificial endocrine pancreas system, to reduce POI and to avoid hypoglycemia. In this Topic Highlight, we review the relationship between perioperative glycemic control and POI, including the use of the artificial pancreas.