To the Editor.—We would like to comment on the article entitled "The Use of Povidone-Iodine to Prevent Postoperative Wound Infection" by Rice and Maceri in the May issue of the Archives (1981;107:287).
They state that "the infection rate [at the Veterans Administration Wadsworth Medical Center, Los Angeles] immediately before the use of povidone-iodine was 38% with the use of perioperative antibiotics. The basic patient population remained the same, and no other changes were made in patient treatment." They comment that the additional use of "routine irrigation [with povidone-iodine] of the wounds immediately before skin closure has resulted in a wound infection rate of 2% in cases in which the oral cavity and pharynx is entered."
We would like to point out differences between their study (oral communication, August 1981) and ours1 (which they used as the historical control). Our study used patients at the VA Wadsworth Medical
BECKER GD, PARELL GJ. Use of Povidone-Iodine. Arch Otolaryngol. 1982;108(2):125. doi:10.1001/archotol.1982.00790500061017