The preoperative clean-up of eyes presents a problem somewhat different from that encountered in other parts of the body. The looseness of the skin of the lids makes penetration of the crevices difficult, and the sensitivity of the cornea and conjunctiva precludes the use of substances which are irritating when accidentaly instilled into the conjunctival sac. A new detergent composed of a mixture of sulfonated alcohols has recently become available as a cleansing agent. It possesses superior detergent properties and lowered irritability as compared with soap. This compound has been used for several months in routine preoperative clean-up of the lids, brow and adjacent skin at the Wilmer Ophthalmological Institute of the Johns Hopkins Hospital. Experimental and clinical results indicate that its use is preferable to the use of soap.
The irritant properties of ordinary soaps1 may be due to the excess alkali present or to the type of
Scholz RO. A NEW DETERGENT FOR USE IN THE PREOPERATIVE CLEAN-UP OF THE EYES. Arch Ophthalmol. 1940;23(5):1060–1062. doi:10.1001/archopht.1940.00860131188012
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