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We systematically reviewed the literature on the infectious risk in patients treated with tumour necrosis factor blocking agents (TNF-BA) undergoing surgery: we searched the Medline (PubMed) and the online archive from the Annual European Congress of Rheumatology and the Annual Scientific Meeting of the American College of Rheumatology. Of total 1259 reports, 14 were finally analysed. With one exception all were retrospective. Four of 6 studies compared patients on TNF-BA with those not receiving TNF-BA, and found an increased risk of infection with the use of TNF-BA. None of the other studies which compared continued with discontinued treatment at surgery found an increased risk of infection, when the medication was continued perioperatively. In conclusion, while in theory there is an increased risk of infections when TNF-BA are administered perioperatively, the available literature does not necessarily support this. It rather appears that patients receiving TNF-BA are a priori at a higher risk of postoperative infections. Scheduling surgery at the end of the drug interval and adding one “safety” week prior to surgery should be an acceptable plan in daily clinical practice.