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The danger of contamination from the tips of ointment tubes has long been recognized, and several substitute methods have been employed. None of these methods, however, has proved entirely satisfactory, and for this reason the metal container shown in the illustration was devised.
Sterile glass or plastic rods for the application of ointment to eyes have two distinct disadvantages: 1. The method is cumbersome because of the changes in the viscosity of the ointment. During the summer months scarcely any ointment will adhere to the glass rod, while in the winter months and at cold temperatures too much ointment adheres to the rod. 2. The use of glass rods may be traumatizing to the sensitive eye.
Sterilization of the tubes is not practical, especially in office practice and in wards, where they must be resterilized after each application.
A metal nozzle or glass tip screwed onto the tube is difficult
PATON RT. EYE OINTMENT DISPENSER. Arch Ophthalmol. 1948;39(4):549-550. doi:10.1001/archopht.1948.00900020557011