Aim Wound infection is a life-threatening complication of pressure injuries (PIs) and is not yet completely preventable. This study aims to explore the dissemination of microbiota between PIs and hospital beds using a culture-independent methodology. This serves as the first step towards developing a new intervention to prevent wound infection. Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted at a longterm care hospital on patients aged >65 years with PIs. The microbiota of wounds, skin and beds were identified using 16S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) gene sequencing analysis. Zero-radius operational taxonomic units (zOTUs) were used for confirming dissemination which indicates bacteria possessing identical sequences within the V3–V4 region of the 16S rRNA gene. Results Ten PIs were analysed in this study. All individuals had zOTUs common to samples from their wound, skin and bed (median: 194, interquartile range [IQR]: 121–320). Furthermore, the bed samples were classified into the same clusters as the wound samples from eight sites. Conclusion Our study is the first to quantitatively show the dissemination of microbiota between PIs and patients’ beds using culture-independent analysis. Preventing the dissemination of bacteria to beds may be an effective therapeutic strategy for the prevention of wound infection.
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