Background: There is a risk of infection in surgical wounds healing by secondary intention (SWHSI) that may affect its treatment. There have been very limited clinical studies done on SWHSI, thus the current study was aimed to assess the prevalence of SWHSI and to characterize its etiology and management in Saudi Arabia. Methodology: A cross‐sectional survey was conducted by collecting data from patients who had at least one SWHSI receiving treatment in primary, secondary, and community settings in Saudi Arabia. After 2 months, a follow up was performed on the patients based on their SWHSI, clinical, and treatment details. Results: A total of 100 patients participated in the study with at least one SWHSI. The majority of patients were males (65%), while 35% were females. The majority of patients had one SWHSI, 40 patients had two SWHSI, 13 patients had three SWHSI, while only 7 patients had four SWHSI. The most common SWHSI, according to the type of surgical specialty, were colorectal (50%) and orthopedic (40%) followed by plastics (25%), vascular (22%), and upper GI (20%). SWHSI wounds that were planned to heal by secondary intention were for nearly two‐thirds of SWHSI in colorectal (0%), and more than half of vascular (12%) surgeries. The partially dehisced wound was commonly found in plastic surgery (12%) and upper GI (10%). However, the fully dehisced wound was most common in orthopedic (11%). Conclusion: This study was the first of its kind to look into the extent, nature, and treatment of SWHSI in Saudi Arabia. The study concluded that SWHSI was common in men more than women and were associated with colorectal and orthopedic surgeries.
Key words: Surgery, wound, SWHSI.