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August 1947

CLINICAL EVALUATION OF UNDECYLENIC ACID AS A FUNGICIDE

Author Affiliations

NEW YORK

From the Department of Dermatology and Syphilology of the New York University College of Medicine on the service of Dr. Frank C. Combes.

Arch Derm Syphilol. 1947;56(2):256-263. doi:10.1001/archderm.1947.01520080116013
Abstract

DURING recent years there have appeared in the literature several reports concerning the fungicidal action of various fatty acids and their salts. The undecylenic acid was discovered to be most effective in laboratory and clinical experiments. Only clinical observations, however, are decisive in evaluating the usefulness of chemical substances in the treatment of fungous diseases of the skin. Laboratory tests in vitro are interesting but not convincing. Often chemicals which give striking results with fungous cultures in test tubes prove entirely useless when applied to human skin.

The observations herein reported were made during the period from October 1944 to January 1946 on patients of the New York University Skin Clinic who were suffering from fungous infections of the skin and nails. Ringworm of the scalp was not included in this investigation.

The diagnosis in all cases was established by microscopic examination of scrapings. Cultures were made only at the

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