October 1963

New Iodine Compound for Degerming Skin Surface

Author Affiliations

From the Surgical Section of Sequoia Hospital.

Arch Surg. 1963;87(4):560-566. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1963.01310160022005

For the past several years the most generally accepted method of degerming the skin surface in preparation for surgical procedures has involved the preliminary scrubbing of the skin with a soap or detergent containing the bacteriostatic agent hexachlorophene, followed by a wash using either tincture or solution of a quaternary ammonium compound, usually benzalkonium chloride. With the awareness during the past few years of an increasing number of postoperative wound infections of serious nature, often involving organisms which are resistant to conventional forms of therapy, the medical literature has reflected a renewal of the search for more effective skin preparation techniques and substances. This has no doubt been spurred on by the general feeling that the offending organisms involved in most postoperative wound infections are probably not brought in extraneously but are much more likely harbored on and in the surface of the patient's skin. Numerous investigators10,11,14 have corroborated

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