Mesenteric Lymphadenectomy Prevents Postburn Systemic Spread of Translocated Bacteria

Rifat Tokyay, Stephen T. Zeigler, Heinz M. Loick, John P. Heggers, Paul De la Garza, Daniel L. Traber, David N. Herndon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


We investigated the role of mesenteric lymph nodes in postburn systemic spread of intestinal bacteria. Group 1 minipigs (n = 8) had a 40% third-degree burn. Group 2 minipigs (n = 7) had the same burn injury, but their mesenteric lymph nodes were removed immediately after burn. Group 3 minipigs (n = 8) had sham burn, and group 4 minipigs (n = 6) had mesenteric lymph node removal under anesthesia. All minipigs were killed at 48 hours, and tissues were harvested for bacteriological culture. Group 1 showed a large number of positive cultures from several of the systemic organs. Group 2 demonstrated no positive cultures in any of the tissues except the peritoneal fluid. These data suggest that bacterial translocation occurs mainly via mesenteric lymphatics to mesenteric lymph nodes and, thence, into other systemic tissue. After major burns, mesenteric lymph nodes may become an additional focus of infection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)384-388
Number of pages5
JournalArchives of Surgery
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery


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