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July 1982

Use of Povidone-Iodine

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles

Arch Otolaryngol. 1982;108(7):461. doi:10.1001/archotol.1982.00790550065019

To the Editor.—We believe it is necessary to correct several erroneous statements made by Rice and Maceri in their rebuttal published in the February Archives (1982;108:125) to our comments on their article entitled "The Use of Povidone-Iodine to Prevent Postoperative Infection," published in the May Archives (1981;107:287).

They state that we chose a 24-hour prophylaxis because of a "decisive period of approximately three hours after bacterial invasion during which antibiotics are important." This is false. This decisive period is when antibiotic prophylaxis should begin and has no meaning as to the duration of prophylaxis. We stated in our article1 that "antibiotics given after this time will not prevent infection." When our cefazolin study was designed, there were no data in the head and neck literature on which to base a decision as to length of prophylaxis. We chose 24 hours because, among various other reasons, general surgical experience did

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