The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN) have developed surveillance definitions for health care-associated infection (HCAI) and specific types of infections in health care settings. The diagnosis of an infection involving the vaginal cuff after hysterectomy requires that certain criteria be met.


Patient selection: posthysterectomy female with a vaginal cuff.


Criteria for infection of the vaginal cuff – one or more of the following:

(1) culture from fluid or tissue obtained from the vaginal cuff is positive for micro-organisms

(2) clinical evidence of an abscess at the vaginal cuff

(3) purulent drainage from the vaginal cuff


The occurrence of a vaginal cuff infection is often reported as a surgical site infection (SSI-VCUF).


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