Temperature ≥ 38ºC/100.4ºF on 2 consecutive postoperative days or > 39ºC/102.2ºF on any postoperative day.
- Incidence: 20-90% depending on type of surgery and other factors
- Occurs after all types of surgical procedures, irrespective of the type of anaesthesia.
The classic “Ws” of postoperative fever:
- Postoperative day 1-2: Wind: Atelectasis
- Postoperative day 2-3: Water: Urinary tract infection (UTI)
- Postoperative day 3-7: Wound: Wound infection
- Postoperative day 5-7: Walking: Deep venous thrombosis (DVT)/thrombophlebitis
- Postoperative day >7: Wonder drug: drug fever [Asgar Pour, 2012
Undiagnosed infection: Sepsis and even death
Prolonged hospitalization (more chance of infection)