During the Great War, when hypochlorite solutions came into wide use, their composition varied, owing chiefly to the lack of chemical control, and to the fact that formulas were changed a number of times. Finally, two or three years after their introduction, a standardized preparation—surgical solution of chlorinated soda 1—was evolved. The essential attributes of this solution have been found to be (1) a definite alkalinity, mild in character (pH 8 to 10); (2) hypertonicity, and (3) presence of the correct amount of sodium hypochlorite (from 0.4 to 0.5 per cent.). The success of treatment with this solution was dependent chiefly on good surgical technic coupled with rigorous laboratory control.
Because the hypochlorite preparations in use were so unstable and existed only in solution, Dakin and his co-workers continued their researches, endeavoring to obtain other chlorin-bearing antiseptics which would not possess these two major disadvantages. The first one
THE CHLORIN ANTISEPTICS. JAMA. 1923;81(7):581. doi:10.1001/jama.1923.02650070065015